The other day I was riding down Vijzelstraat towards the city centre. As I was approaching the Prinsengracht (a one-way and precisely here), I slowed down, looked for on-coming cars and bikes from the left and right… and kept riding.
Yes, I knowingly rode through a red light. In Amsterdam. The capital of red-light-running. I know, that doesn’t make it ok.
A police car followed me, pulled me over, and proceeded to lecture me about how it’s unsafe, especially “because a police car was parked at the intersection.”
And then he actually asked me if he could give me a fine of €97. I had already argued my side by saying I felt safe, so I didn’t argue further. But could I have said no? I wonder.
So watch out Amsterdammers. They’re out to get ya!
Stand out from the crowd with bright, wild, neon colours! Make your bike a masterpiece.
Give a lift, or carry your friend’s bag. These two friends have it down.
When I first moved here 2.5 years ago I always carried an umbrella. People forewarned me of the climate here and briefed me to be prepared. But after the years I just got used to the basics ( I couldn’t bring myself to put on waterproof pants anymore and listen to the swooshing noise it made as I walked!). This entire Winter has definitely been cleansed from the heavens regularly – I have lived in my worn my knee-high trusty rain boots and olive green raincoat pretty much every day…the staple uniform! :) I decided to turn a negative thing into a positive fashion choice.
For others, practicality kicks in and a soggy seat is solved with a shopping bag as a cover. I have even seem bags worn as rainhats! (and very eager to catch it on camera).
With grey misty skies, a low sun and the leaves all fallen from the trees, the canals seem almost monochrome. It’s part of our daily lives here in Amsterdam and the city wouldn’t be the same without it x
I caught these Amsterdammers going though the Rijksmuseum bike path, enjoying today’s sunny chill and riding fast through the tunnel. So many people out and about on their bikes today. Babies, bakfiets, lovers, and friends — I love that no matter the weather, we keep on peddling.
Oh what a year!
We would like to thank all of our followers and fellow cyclists around the world and wish you all a wonderful 2015!
Alexander is a true Amsterdammer. He owns a beautiful flower shop in the speigelquartier in the centre of the city. His customers cycle up to his store on the Prinsengracht canal and cycle away with handfuls of gorgeous flowers neatly tucked away in their arms, bike crates or panniers. He lives and breaths flowers – he even lives on a street called the Bloemgracht! (flower canal). You may have seen Alexander or his staff zipping through Amsterdam on their bikes delivering daily flowers to locals in the sunshine, rain or even snow.
Why did you become a florist?
The story all started in the area of Nieuwendammerdijk, in Amsterdams North where I grew up. This area provided my inspiration as a small child where I played in the forest behind my family home, building huts and creating my own garden. I used to make floral necklaces for my grandmother in my little secret hideaway. Floristry came naturally as I love working with my hands and creating special and unique things and getting to know all different kinds people. I love it.
Where are your favourite places to ride?
In the Summertime I love riding my racebike to the fishing village of Marken. This 45km cycle route is the best way to spend a summer day and it is also a popular route amongst locals and tourists. You can take a quick ferry ride from Amsterdam, cycle along the picturesque dyke houses all the way through Durgedam. Its a beautiful cycle route. In Spring and Fall I love cycling through forests such as Amsterdamse Bos or Hoge Veluwe which is outside of Amsterdam. I even take my bike to other cities such as Brussels when I have weekends away. It’s the only way to travel.
What bike do you own?
I have an original Gazelle that my Grandfather used to own, a racebike, an opa fiets (Grandpa bike) which has a big wooden crate to make my flower deliveries with – and I recently received a beautiful hybrid bike for my birthday which is half race-bike, half mountain bike. Each one has it’s own purpose.
A.P Bloem services Amsterdam and across the Netherlands with their arrangements and displays for local homes, birthdays, weddings and special events. Their signature style draws inspiration from the Golden Age and wild fields in the true essence of nature. “We genuinely love what we do and we wish for people to share and experience the beauty of the special things we source and create” says Alexander. You can keep up to date with their flowery adventures here.
Just when the bike wasn’t practical and stylish enough..they go and make cool packable.
Yep it’s that time again–dig out your scarves, hats, and long coats … because, ladies and gents, it’s fall.