#2: The only Kronan in Alice

Half of the Dutch population owns a Kronan, a sturdy simple bicycle from Sweden.

 

Three gears, a frame built so that you sit upright, a basket in front and a carrier on the back. The frames are red, blue or yellow. Mine is red and blue.

 

I think it is the only Kronan in Alice. I bought it four or five years ago in Melbourne. The shop has closed down in the meantime. There is no Kronan shop in Australia anymore.

 

Somehow Australians do not dig the Kronan. I, Single Female Bicycle Rider, do not give a damn about that, I love my Kronan with a passion and I, in turn, loath Australian bikes.

 

There are things that Australians simply are bad at, one of these things is bicycles, another one is bridge building.

 

Not everyone thinks the Kronan is uncool though. I get stopped now and then by people who want to talk about my bicycle.

 

They first ask where it is from (Sweden), then how much it has cost ($1500). Then they say: “nice bike”, and I say “thank you” and we’re each on our way again.

 

Sometimes I feel I could have talked to the stranger about my Kronan for hours. How nice life with a Kronan is in Alice. How fit I’ve become. How fast I am on my bike.

 

How I can zigzag the traffic in the morning and around 4pm without difficulties, how handy the shopping basket in the front is, how pleasant Alice is seen from a bicycle, how tradies hate cyclists, and how other (perhaps also single, but not necessarily female) cyclists greet me with a smile and a nod of the head, as if we’re in a secret society (of for example Single Female Bicycle Riders).

 

I have not missed my car at all yet, although I used to rave about my car just as foolishly as I now rave about my bicycle. Especially when I had a Toyota Landcruiser Eighties Series … Ooops, that’s enough now.

 

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