“Excuse me, what rally is this?” The man kept asking from the footpath.
“It’s just cycling rally,” someone answered from among the riders.
“Well, what is the purpose?’ The middle-aged man wondered.
Nobody answered at first. As the man continued to ask the same question, someone shouted from behind, “To get you started cycling.”
That, in fact, was the real reason of the Eighth Critical Mass that took place in Dhaka on 27th April, 2012. If you’re not familiar with Critical Mass, this Wikipedia entry should help you get an idea. However, the purpose of Critical Mass in Dhaka — organized by BDCyclists — is “to demonstrate to the car-owning crowd that bicycles are completely adequate for their local needs.” With that in mind, whoever answered the man during the ride was absolutely correct.
Critical Mass is the largest cycling event held in Bangladesh. The host of the event, BDCyclists, organizes regular rides on every Friday and Saturday, but the last Friday of the month draws more riders from around the city than in those weekly rides. However, today’s Critical Mass 8 was probably not the biggest one ever held.
I first joined Critical Mass in its 6th season. That was two months ago when I first learned cycling. Critical Mass 6 was my first day out with bicycle in the streets. Sadly, I had a knee injury as I fell down on the streets for the first time. That kept me inside home for two weeks but thankfully I never got injured since then. Still, CM 6 was bigger and better than CM 8 in my opinion as there were more riders and the route was longer.
Anyway, that doesn’t mean that my day went in vain. I did enjoy the ride although I hoped the route was a little longer. Luckily the weather was not as much warm as it was in the past few days. That didn’t help me, though. I always sweat a lot. I mean, a freaking lot! 😡
Here goes some pictures taken from BDCyclists Facebook group. If you cannot see the photos, your network administrator (or boss, if you’re at office) may have blocked access to Facebook. Please try loading from another place.
So, that kind of wraps up the day. I didn’t feel well for the rest of the day. Because of excessive sweating, I felt way too tired. I was like stuck with my bed until evening. But it was wroth going out with other riders. Probably not the best Critical Mass in Dhaka, but it was worth it.
It’s your time to speak up. Do you ride a bicycle? Have you tried looking up if there are people who organize Critical Mass in your city? Will you be joining them if you find one? Let me know why or why not.