Friday, April 30, 2021

______________________ EMAIL TO MY DAUGHTER _____________________


 Moi posing with my new 'Flame Red' Brompton folding bike with my feet resplendent in my "Digital Aqua' Crocs.

Photo Credit: Your Mum

Hi Charlotte,

Please find attached a couple of photos of me with my new awesome little Brompton Folding bicycle. I bought it in Auckland a couple of days ago. They are an iconic piece of excellence in British engineering.

Although they are quite expensive, that is VERY expensive, I think they are worth every cent and so easy to use and fold up and put away afterwards.

I have just gone for my first ride, that is my first ZOOM, around the town basin 'loop walk' with a side trip to the Whangarei Yacht Club.

Brompton owners say that owning and riding a Brompton puts a smile on their face - and I can assure you that this is true. In fact I think doctors should write "One Brompton Bike" on the medical prescriptions of all unhappy and depressed individuals - owning and riding this bike would be a sure fire cure.

The colour of the bike is officially 'Flame Red' but it looks to me more of a 'Lacquered Bronze' colour. Anyway with my flame red lacquered bronze Brompton paired with my new (can you believe it?) "Digital Aqua" coloured Crocs, I must say I cut quite a vivid picture of zippy Brompton competence around the environs of the Whangarei Town Basin - (Even if I do say so myself, he said modestly).

Lots of love - Dad XXXX
Photo Credit: Your Mum
 This guy gives a great biased take on making the choice to purchase the iconic Brompton folding bicycle. Among his Brompton musings is a number of claims that are fully affective rather than logical and in doing so rests my case for me (and him).



Steve-the-Wargamer said...


Alden Smith said...

Yes Steve, this is a laughing matter - one should never take oneself too seriously.

Ben said...

Hi Alden,
You are talking my stuff now.
This bike is magnificent for commuting. Take the train for the main distance and in the city you go by Brompton bike.
You see them also around marina’s, because they can be stored aboard a mid-size yacht easily.
Main important question is: how is the ride in comparison to regular bikes. How is the handling with the smaller wheels etc.
By the way, not only your bike looks good. You must have had a good summer. 😊

I am thinking of buying a gravel bike for touring. We like the forest roads in Italy/Austria/Germany and Switzerland. Not as difficult as the Mountain bike paths but no asphalt.

Alden Smith said...

Hi Ben - Yes, bikes are part of your area of expertise, as I appreciated when we visited you in the NL's and you and I went for a ride together.

The Brompton is the inner city commuting bike par excellence. It is also the 'Rolls Royce' of folding bikes. The engineering is excellent - the bike is strong, easy to fold and unfold, you can take it anywhere and stow it easily. People take them on trains, buses, planes - take them to work, take them up in a lift and store them under their desk for the day.

The laws of physics of course mean that the smaller wheels makes the Brompton less capable or comfortable for riding on gravel tracks and rough terrain - but having said that people do use (loaded with tents etc) them for adventure riding. I have seen Utube videos of Bromptons being ridden from the coast of Africa to Morocco, all around Europe and in South America. But ideally it is a smoother surface city bike. The Brompton doesn't struggle to carry camping gear and go long distances but the ride is obviously less comfortable.

I love the convenience of the bike. I ride every day - the bike goes with me on the back seat of the car and when I arrive at my starting point I simply put on my helmet, unfold the bike and off I go - great. In the future when traveling around New Zealand I will take the Brompton and use it to explore the towns and cities we visit - I am unable to do this on foot now because my arthritic knee and ankle severely restrict my walking distance. On longer trips away I will also take my other bike which is more of a touring / adventure bike for the older traveler (regular wheel size, upright riding position, fatter tyres etc).

I absolutely love my Brompton and the easy access to physical exercise it brings with the whole folding concept. I think the Brompton would be great in the Netherlands with your amazing network of good flat bike paths.