Over the last year, I’ve had many occasions where the ‘practical car’ isn’t so practical anymore. The concept of getting in a sheltered car and setting off is just about as far as practical goes. Whether that’s because of the time I’m sat in traffic or just being incompatible with fitting things in, it’s become really inaccessible at times.
We have an electric hybrid car, it’s lovely to drive, the interior and exterior is nice and everything about it is simply nice. But essentially it’s superfluous. The seats don’t fold down meaning trips to the local waste/recycle centre, loading the car with furniture or Ikea kit is inaccessible and as you can imagine, many other things make this vehicle at times impractical.
Not only all of the above, but in March this year (2020), we had a baby girl, Fiola and obviously as a new parent, I feel really conscious of being a good role model, particularly in such changing times where the status quo is being challenged/changed. I want Fi to grow up with fond memories of going to park in the cargo bike and eventually cycling their herself.
I don’t want her to rely on having a car the whole time.
Society is changing, not only due to the pandemic, but I can see changes in peoples attitude towards other modes of transport. Whilst there’s still lots of negative push back towards shared roads (cycling lanes and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods) and public spaces, there is definitely a shift in attitude. Possibly due to the added mental health benefits of being outside and/or excersising?
As a new father, I want to be an advocate for cycling (amongst other things) and I want to bestow these ethics in my daughter. I believe as she grows older, her world should/will have much more of a focus on sustainability and the environment, particularly as we’re seeing so many issues raised that we’ve ignored over the last century.
The Cargo Bike
We have a Larry vs HarryeBullitt, which is a pedal-assisted cargo bike. It has a flat bed on the front which can carry a max weight of 180kg. We have a changeable canopy with toddler seat for the wee one or box to fit the front depending on what needs to be carried.
Being in Yorkshire you’re forever going up one hill to come down another, and with the very nature of this bike to carry things, I figured the pedal assistance would be a good shout.
The bike is so much fun to ride and it’s been such a liberating experience being able to load it up with shopping/bushes/anything I can get the chance to carry! Being able to go on a bike ride with my wife, baby and dog, rock up at various parks/destinations across Leeds without having to faff with parking has been such a positive change in our lifestyle!