Photo by Natalie Kuhn
It's time for me to move on. This is a Montague folding bike that I bought quite a number of years ago, and it's the bike I used to get around most of the towns featured in the upcoming book Bicycle Diaries. That means Istanbul, Berlin, Sydney, Adelaide, Budapest (pictured), Buenos Aires, Tokyo, Vancouver, London... and many, many more. It's been around the world about four times and surprisingly, it's all still working, though it's scratched up, rusty in spots and there are pieces of travel stickers all over the center post (Manila and Roma are still pretty much intact). If I were a sentimental guy, it would hold sentimental value — but for me personally it would be nicer if that sentimental value were transferred to cash money that will be donated to the London Cycling Campaign, an appropriate cause.
About the London Cycling Campaign:
The LCC is a volunteer-led charity with 10,000 members. Its vision is to make London a world-class cycling city. There are more than 800,000 regular cycle users in London. The LCC works to improve safety, security and enjoyment for existing cyclists and to create an environment where everyone who wanst to cycle can do so confidently.
The LCC has a four-part formula for change:
1) To promote an urban cycling culture in which mass and everyday cycling is seen as a sign of a modern, aspirational and civilised city;
2) To win back neighbourhoods and streets for cycling and walking through people-centred street design, high quality cycling facilities, and decreasing the volume and speed of motor traffic;
3) To foster pro-cycling leadership and investment which acts on the overwhelming economic case for cycling, and;
4) To ensure all London communities can benefit from cycling.
Raise your virtual paddle on eBay — bidding ends 16 August 2009, 17:06:21 BST. The winner must collect the bike from Central London, WC1, near Tottenham Court Road/Holborn tubes. UK taxpayers may Gift Aid their contribution, which allows the LCC to reclaim the tax on the donation, increasing its value.
The frame folds in half easily, in seconds, which allows the bike to go into the luggage compartment of a tour bus, or the back of a van or hatchback car. I changed the original handlebar stem to one that goes a bit higher, for better city riding.
If the front wheel is removed with a quick release, it will fit into a
small car trunk or taxi. Dismantling the bike for air travel takes a
bit longer — about 15 minutes once one knows the ropes. I purchased a
plastic semi-hardshell flight case for it from Montague (Dahon makes
flight cases too), which allowed me to bring it along as a second piece of
It's well-made, though not as lightweight as some. I just rode it
all around Roma, and no problems — but watch out for those
From Koy Thomson, LCC’s Chief Executive:
"David Byrne reflects the intimacy of the link between city and cycle. He shows us the next step in human urban evolution towards pedal power. The cycle frees the mind and body. It fires up new experiences and creates a more liveable city for everybody. David’s bicycle has been at the centre of an amazing multi-continent Odyssey and we are delighted to be part of that journey."