Two hearts and one bike: celebrating Valentine’s Day in the saddle

Bike Culture & Tips

Two hearts and one bike: celebrating Valentine’s Day in the saddle
February 2018

When I met my girlfriend for the first time, I was dazzled by her. It took just a look, a few seconds, and we felt connected, in tune with each other.
We’ve been a couple for a few months now.
She has an immense imagination and she often surprises me: she makes me dinner without me knowing, she buys me a sweater of my favourite colour, she comes pick me up from work with a thousand ideas for the night… in short, I never get bored with her.

But now it’s my turn. I want to organise something for her and Valentine's Day is the perfect opportunity. I thought about dinners, spa weekends, theatre performances… and then I said to myself: why not do something that challenges us in a fun way on the day of love? The answer was simple: a ride on a tandem bike, that strange evolution of a bicycle that, with its wider frame, will allow us to ride together while sitting close to each other.

About an hour away from our home, there’s a lake with a long cycle path that goes through woods and gardens. It’s the perfect location for my surprise, because if you’re not very experienced with this special type of bike, riding in town can be tricky (traffic jam, traffic lights, giving way to cars... it’s not the same as when you’re riding a normal bicycle).

Just like when you live as a couple, even a tandem ride has some rules you need to follow if you want to go in the right direction and not get stranded. We will need to remember to do two things in particular: to keep our balance and coordinate our efforts
In particular, we will have to keep a balanced posture  and synchronise our pedal strokes. Neither one will have to stop suddenly, otherwise we could fall. We will have to work a harmoniously and closely together, which will allow us to find the right rhythm and to understand when we’re tired and insecure of the other.  Whether we are just starting or taking a break, we will always get on and off the tandem bike together. In addition, as in any couple, we will divide tasks: who sits on the front will have the responsibility to drive the vehicle and choose when to brake and change gear. Who stays in the back, besides trusting the driver, will have to follow his choices with the right movements and understand when it’s time to use the third brake, to get to our destination in perfect balance.

Once we have taken all these things into account, we will only have to enjoy the view: the pristine coast of the lake, the splendid 18th century gardens at the side of the shore and the huge centuries-old forest that borders the water. It won’t be a short trip. For this reason, more or less halfway, we could stop in a quaint restaurant at the north of the lake. Then we’ll get back back in the saddle, to ride all around the lake on the west coast.

I’m sure than my girlfriend will love this surprise and I can’t wait to challenge myself with her.

After all, if two people want to go a long way together, there's nothing better than riding on the same bike.

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