The Bike Of..

(Photo: Dhariyash Rathod)
(Photo: Dhariyash Rathod)

Name: Diego Quintero Pulido (MSc Sustainable Energy Technology)
Brand: Batavus
Price: 140 euros
Striking feature: Pretty fast   

“As soon as arrived in the Netherlands, I bought a bike from the shop in front of TU Delft’s Sport Center. My first bike was a yellow mountain bike with nice accessories, secondhand, but in a good shape. The first day I got a flat tire and had to have it fixed. That was the first time I learned that it’s really expensive to repair a bike in the Netherlands: it cost me more than 12.00 euros. Since that day I’ve tried to fix my bike myself. I didn’t have to search for the bike, as the university gives us the opportunity to buy one really easy on campus, although really expensively for a secondhand bike. 

For international students it’s very important to use bikes, as bus and tram are expensive. The bike then is an important way of transport – fast and cheap. The Netherlands has a culture of bikes, and I learned during my time here that the most important part of culture is trying to be part of it somehow, and one way of doing that was by using a bike every day. 

I use my bike for everything, from shopping to going to university, and I also used to travel between cities. In the summer I use it to go to the beach in Den Haag and also to the markets in Rotterdam and to Alexandrium shopping centre. 

The bike I have now is a racing bike; it doesn’t have any special features, but it is a pretty fast bike. I like everything about my bike, and it has especially nice wheels. I try to fix my bike myself, and the last time I had problems with a wheel I bought a new wheel and put it on with tools that I bought for bikes at Gama. Once I rode to the beach in The Hague, but once there something went seriously wrong with my bike and I ended up having to walk all the way back to Delft because I did not have any money that day. It took me more than 3 hours to walk back to home. I hated my bike that day.”