The Busycle went to the Silicon Valley Elec Auto Assn Rally at Palo Alto High on Sat Sept 30.
Report by Martin Krieg
Had the usual Busycle blast after Rich Willits showed up here at 8:30 AM for an on the fly Make/Meet in which he installed a 3-unit bike rack on to the back of the Busycle. And it major came in handy as we had it full both ways. We left with the ten people noted below and had a full house in the space of a few blocks time. It took us an hour and half to cover the 2.6 miles because we kept stopping.
We stopped the bus to let different people drive every few blocks or so. We picked people up. We dropped people off. We even enrolled a couple in a BMW who had stopped their car so they could watch us roll by. We laughed and visited and after arriving at Palo Alto High School, where the event was held, sent a scouting team off in search of the best way to the Electric Car rally.
Everyone seemed to stop what they were doing when we rolled into view. We arrived to smiles and the small crowd that had been busy organizing the test track area that they had set up for electric vehicle (most of which were of the two wheel variety) test rides. After I asked them to keep it clear while we did ours, they ended up doing a great job of keeping it clear for us.
As the core team went off and explored the rally, I stayed and gave probably eight people powered hayrides. It was here that the whistle Chantal gave me at her Waverley St block party, the week previous, came in handy. Every fifteen minutes or so, I would blow it and then announce "Busycle Rides". At which point, people could often be seen running from a good distance away to get a seat on the bus for the two short 1/8th mile laps they would get to participate in.
The last ride I gave was for the Peninsula Raging Grannies (pictured below, they already have their own Busycle photo at their web site above), a spirited group of 10 classy women, all in their golden years, who sing out for peace and justice. All eyes, and innumerable cameras were focused on us as we did a couple of laps around the course. It was a trick getting the Grannies all seated and making sure their Victorian wear was out of pedaling harm's way, but it was worth it as even Channel 5 gave us their full attention on the runs we did with the protest singers. They even sang their version of Daisy (Bicycle Built for Two), and since they printed out their music so people could join them, the words can be found below.
On the way home, Regan Cheng was the only veteran pedaler on the bus. This after I blew the whistle and got a fresh crew of recruits to get us across town. When the first team found it it was not a round trip, at least half of them climbed off. I filled the remaining seats by saying we just needed help get the bus off campus.
What these people, however, didn't know, was that the Busycle is addicting. By the time we reached the school's south gate, several of the short trippers decided they were having too much fun to get off. One even called his wife and told her to pick him up when his ride was over. We got back home, the same way we arrived at the Rally . With a bus full of smiling, bright eyed people, all happy and excited that they had ridden the bus!!
Daisy Daisy (Bicycle Built for Two)
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