Thursday, August 23, 2007

biking and stupid bees

the other day, i was walking around the main shopping area in zurich - bahnhofstrasse - and noticed that there was a place near one of the big department stores where bikes are "rented" for free. i couldn't really tell much else about the place, since everything was written in german, and so i asked whitney (a phd student in the lab) about it. apparently, from may to october, you can "hire" a zurich city bike for free (just put a deposit of 20 francs and provide your id, you get both back when you return the bike). the company, called zuri rollt, has big sponsors like mcdonald's (which is how they can afford to be free), and basically does this to promote environmentally friendly modes of transportation.

so, last night, whitney and i went to try it out. it was SO much fun. i haven't ridden a bike in a really, really long time...but it is true, ri
ding a bike is like a riding a bike. once you know how, you don't forget. the bikes themselves were very nice (at least from my lay perspective) and equipped with a cute basket and a bell! we got the bikes a bit before sunset and rode around the city center and the lake. it was such a nice evening, cool breeze and just so enjoyable to take in the sights from the bike! definitely something i won't ever forget.

so, ok. this was the nice part of my evening yesterday. when i got back to my room last night, i opened my window since it was a bit stuffy and i figured the ants had all drowned in the downpour we had last week. after a little while, i heard some buzzing and saw that there were 3 or 4 bees in my room!! i absolutely hate bees! i've been scared of them ever since i was little, probably because i witnessed my brother get stung several times when we were kids. so i closed the window, opened my door, hoping they would leave. after awhile, i didn't see any bees except 1 that was sitting on the ceiling light and it wasn't moving at all. i decided it was safe to sleep. around 4:30a, i jerk awake because i feel a sting on my hand. i turn on the light and see that i got freaking stung by the damn bee and my finger is red and swollen! there went my perfect record of never having been stung by a bee. again, i tried to get the bee to leave my room but couldn't see where it went and if it was still around or not. needless to say, i wasn't really able to sleep much after that.

finally, this morning, while i was getting ready for work, i heard some more buzzing near the window! argh. on my list of things to do this evening - buy some bee killer! seriously, i'm so frustrated with this place where i've been staying. being in zurich, and being able to travel around here has been great, but i'm looking forward to being back in my nice, bee and ant-free apartment in chicago. but i'm thinking maybe it would be nice to get a bike when i get back...


The biking was great!! But why did it take me nearly three years to get the initiative to do it?

Thanks for the inspiration!!!

You should get a bike!!! It's soo much fun. I've been loving my bike since I got it. It's makes me giddy every morning that I get to ride into work. ;) Imagine how giddy I am when I use it to ride home! Plus, if you get a bike, me, you, and Andrea can form our own little bike gang. Wouldn't that be sweet!