Monday, December 12, 2011

going deep

I was cruising through life as a rather careless and disengaged BUG President when I got an insistent invite to a cycling safety workshop in Brisbane. I like Brisbane alright, but not twice in two weeks, so I did the 'long day from hell' and flew out at 6am to return at 7:30 pm.

I guess I have to be a bit diplomatic here, because this is "a public forum" in that it is available to anyone who stumbles upon it, and part of the public record, but oh my, there are some interesting characters in cycling advocacy. I am really tired, but here is a bit of an impression of the day:
  • Australians are not Danes and no amount of wishing is going to transform our society so lets stop going there
  • Two Aussies walking will turn into a race. Two Aussies drinking will turn into a competition. Can we please just accept that sports cycling is the 'norm' here for most Aussies who get on a bike, even if it takes them a bit of time to find the inner mongrel. It is in there.
  • Transport and Main Roads get cycling, now be vigilant to make sure that your local council doesn't stuff up their good policy with silly local notions (I am on it)
  • Bicycle Queensland has no idea, at all, really
  • Townsville doesn't actually exist, nor does Toowoomba. apparently.
  • If you live in Queensland read this draft cycling strategy, and enjoy the bits that infer that certain things are all done, even though you probably haven't seen any evidence of it where you live, unless you live in Brisbane.
If I can get on a plane and have a look around and talk to people, why can't they? It is looking like a long year ahead. And I may have told some people to 'grow up' or even 'get fu**ed' I don't know, it was a hard day of not seeing eye to eye. I am filled with hope though, because for the most part, the important people get it, and the rest are background noise anyway.


AMR said...

Thanks for your post, Dee. It is a bit of an eye opener...
Perhaps, it is time to get more involved with cycling. We need big changes and we need people who can work to make those changes happen.

PS: Don't forget, next trip!!

Mae said...

That's exactly why I don't do 'the long day' any more...

Dee said...

I was thinking of you AMR as I rushed from Central Station to the Atomic cafe for a pre meeting meeting, then I had to rush at the end of the day to catch my flight. I'll try and do a proper visit soon.