Our co-director, Steph Nappa, is writing this series to share her experiences and lessons learned from her study abroad in Europe. You can also follow along on Instagram with #stephlovesbikes.
Yesterday I realized how happy I was on my bike. I felt as if my bike was an extension of myself, that it provided me freedom and a true rush as I cruised through the streets. It has been a while since I’ve felt this way on my bike. The past couple of years I’ve come to see my bike purely as a cheap and fast method to get me to school and back each day. Riding had become monotonous and kind of a drag. This trip has renewed my love for the act of biking and I relish that slight burn in my thigh muscles and feeling the air rush past my face and through my hair. It feels as if I’m flying, not just my body but my very soul.
I don’t know if I can fully describe why I feel this way here when I haven’t before. The bike is still primarily a mode of transportation, the only one we have access to, the same way it is at home. Maybe it’s purely the variety in my trips. Maybe it’s the fact that I can truly travel anywhere on any street by bike without feeling uncomfortable or out of place. Whatever it is, I’m determined to hold on to this love when I return home and embrace my bike not only as my mode of transportation but as a central part of my identity.