When I heard we were (finally!) immigrating to France, a daydream rolled through my mind like a Hollywood film; cycling through the streets of Paris, the pedals wedged under the incredibly sexy heels I did not yet own, a Burberry trench, also absent from my wardrobe, catching the breeze behind me. The sun always shone and the streets were cobble stoned in this fantasy. The sidewalks were lined with men who would stop and stare with Parisien connaisseur-ship.
Within months after our arrival I had the shoes, the trench and the bike. Not just any bike, either. Like the rest of the dream, my vision had been very precise. I had dreamed of a vintage black Dutch bike with a swans’ neck, large wheels and a willow basket. It was a great bike, but somewhat clunky on those cobble stones and so rusty, it didn’t survive many seasons. But I loved it, and it served me well, as I would pedal to the girl’s school every afternoon, passing the dozens of Gendarmes who guarded the Prime Minister’s residence next door. These handsome, uniformed Frenchmen would stop and admire, just as I had imagined.
I have decided that it is time to return to that dream and now that the weather is cooperating, I’ve been shopping for a bike. Which is a very convenient coincidence, since this morning I was invited to discover TulipBikes. Which is how I found myself pedaling through the Tuileries on a gorgeous, Parisian morning. On Dutch bikes, the cyclist sits up straight, and the large wheels make for delightfully efficient pedaling. I was living the dream, and this time it was more stylish than I had ever fantasized.
Even cooler, your Tulip Bike is designed by you, each custom two wheeler put together in Maastricht, Holland by the handicapped and traditionally un-employable. What is that? Doing good for the environment, while helping others? Yes! And even better, the prices are surprisingly reasonable, which has made me a fan!
As you design your bike, keep in mind that Dutch men opt for a black frame, while Dutch women prefer the white. French men choose the white and French women the red or green. As for me, they are so gorgeous that I am having a hard time deciding and would like your help. Green with a wooden basket, or red with a willow basket? Or is there something better? Even if you’re not in the market, it’s fun to dream with all the options on their site.