Sunday, 9 December 2012

Rolling or gliding in Helsinki?

Since about three or four years, I have realized, the beginning of winter brings the same sequence of external events, personal action and drifting thoughts: first come slippery roads, then I put winter tyres on my bike. Then comes snow and, despite the marvellous job the snowploughs do,there comes the day, when I’m standing in knee-high snow heaps on the bike lane and wish for a kicksled.
A kicksled was or (maybe still is) a popular vehicle used by older ladies in wintertime further north and outside Helsinki. But then again, in Helsinki there are a lot of snowploughs and they distribute a lot of gravel on sidewalks and bike lanes. Many streets shine in clean black tarmac, despite one and a half meter of snow otherwise. So, basically the kicksled as an ideal mode of transport is ruled out in favour of vehicles (mostly cars, but also bicycles lose compared to sleds and skis) that struggle in winter despite all the effort.
Leaving work the other day I was very happy to see: A kicksled neatly parked next to my bike. So it is possible! Will I glide on skids next winter instead of rolling on spiked tyres?