Last night was the first night ride of the year of Critical Mass, that party on wheels, the rolling two-wheeled bicycle circus that goes on all over the world every time the last Friday of the month comes around. So come 5:30pm, there’s a pack of bikes loitering around the state library, leaning everywhere like they’re hanging out in their own living room, and like grass growing in spring, they just keep on multiplying. And they’d all got dressed up to celebrate.
My beautiful friend KP, lover of horses, the Richmond Tigers and all round awesome artist, was there on her equally beautiful De Rosa road bike with matching pink suede boots, sequin dress and fur jacket.
As was the beautiful Jes and 150 other bikes of all kinds, some sk8boards, rollerbladers and pretty much anything with wheels and a person on top. So, around 6:30pm we pulled out into the sea of cars and rolled down La Trobe St,our own personal block party moving with us from the sound systems hooked to the back of several bikes.
And you’ve never seen a bike like this go round in a circle almost spinning on the spot (but that was much later and with the ride an the pub behind us).
Through the city getting held up by cars blocking the road, the sky darkening our lights flashing, on past the railyards and through Docklands, then back into the city where Victoria Market was witness to a freak sotrm, a bicyclone. Nothing like a roundabout and too many bikes to make Twister look like an afternoon shower.
Except a Bike Lift. Of which there were two, both filling intersections with anti-gravity bicycles, Eventually, just in time to save the day, we arrived at Trades Hall to hook up with Reclaim the Steets, another soundsystem, lots of dancing, food, hanging out until we had to go to the pub – naturally.
On a very circuitous route to the Union Hotel in Fitzroy (I think), up Lygon St, back down Lygon street, to Carlton Gardens, get lost in the carpark, ride through the real park, ride round in circles pulling long skids on the bluestone pavement, along Johnston St, down Brunswick, back up Brunkswick (someone didn’t want to go to the pub), Jes takes control.
Arrive at the pub! WOOHOO!! drink beer, sit outside and talk and talk and talk until it’s really late and we have to go inside or go somewhere else, and then ride south back home.