Spring finally seems to be making an appearance here in London.
The weather’s been a bit milder recently – we’ve even had a few beautiful sunny days to enjoy.
The kind that make you want to take a long stroll, read magazines while you bask in the sunlight or jump on your bike and set off for a ride.
This is where a Bobbin bicycle comes in handy.
Bobbin makes beautiful classic ‘sit up and beg’ style bikes with traditional wicker baskets which are just begging to be filled with Kindles, puppies and flowers.
Ok I know I’m not actually living in a Kindle advert, but oh how I wish I were!
I’ve loved cycling ever since I was a little girl when my father and I used to go off together on a Saturday morning and ride around the neighbourhood before the roads became too busy.
He is a bit of a seasoned pro and taught me everything I know. He can even build a bike from scratch! It’s not fun but he can do it.
My dad always talks about the days when he used to tootle around on a classic Dutch bike as a child and what a pleasure it was to ride. He now rides a mountain bike to work, which he’s grown accustomed to, but it’s more of a chore than a pleasure.
I myself loathe mountain bikes. Having outgrown the beloved upright Raleigh of my youth, I bought a mountain bike to replace it and caused myself some serious back and neck problems. So I sold it.
Anyone with any lower back problems (which is most people) really shouldn’t go anywhere near mountain bikes or racing bikes.
The traditional upright bikes aren’t about speed or distance, they’re about leisurely gliding. Feeling the breeze against your face and leaving everything else behind. Except whatever’s in your basket. Obviously.
Nowadays I like to ride in the early evening in summer when the days are longer and the sun is just setting.
It’s very peaceful on the roads at that time as all the cars and mad commuter cyclists are safely at home and not in your way.
A Bobbin isn’t just a thing of beauty to look at, it’s very good for your health as well (both mental and physical).
My dad is a smoker and has been for almost 40 years, but he can still out-cycle me any day, in any weather.
It probably isn’t an exaggeration to say that his cycling is pretty much keeping his lungs going.
If that isn’t a reason to go and invest in a bicycle I don’t know what is.
He also tends to do most of his best thinking on his bike on the commute – which is no mean feat on the crazy London roads.
I myself feel completely relaxed and at peace when I’m cycling. All I’m thinking about is not falling off the bike so my mind becomes very calm and clear.
It honestly works better for me than meditation.
Bobbin makes a variety of elegant and cute Dutch style bikes with equally cute names which include the Birdie, the Bramble, the Brownie and the Madam.
The Bramble, Brownie and Birdie are all around the £300 mark while the Firefly, Hummingbird and Madam are £499, £475 and £570 respectively.
I’ve had my eye on the Bobbin Firefly (their ladies bike with a sturdy steel frame, 5 speed Sturmey Archer hub gears, internal drum brakes and 26 inch wheels) for a while.
A very long while.
Tragically it appears to be a 2012 model and has now been discontinued and replaced by the Bobbin Hummingbird.
The Hummingbird is also top of the range but has external gears. Which aren’t really my bag. So I may have to go for a Birdie.
The higher spec more expensive bikes are probably only worth investing in if you ride very regularly.
I personally am a big fan of steel frames on a bike, they make it feel sturdy and strong. Aluminium always feels distinctly too light and unreliable to me.
I also prefer internal gears as they require less maintenance and last longer and covered chains so I don’t have to worry about my jeans becoming caught in the chain or covered in bike grease.
I also like a kickstand.
Bobbin‘s bikes tend to come in 17″, 19″ and 21″ frames so you should be able to find one that fits you perfectly.
Always remember to put lights and a bell on your bike and if you’re cycling in the dark make sure you’re visible to drivers and pedestrians.
You can check out Bobbin’s website here.