Back to the Future

I came across this video about cycling in the Netherlands in the 1950s and had to smile. Change the clothing and the types of cars in the background, but otherwise, the film could have been made today. Whole families on one bike, couples holding hands while riding, all sorts of things being carried while riding, and the inevitable bakfiets. The only real difference is that plumbers and such now have vans instead of bikes.

4 thoughts on “Back to the Future

  1. I LOVE this! really makes me feel very happy about living here. Riding my bike is one of my most favorite things ever – the fact that it’s so easy to get around by bike and you see so many people doing it, whole families TOGETHER on a Sunday (what a concept! never happened in my family!), moms and babies… it just amazes me. I don’t think I could ever go back to driving around everywhere. I honestly don’t like to drive for little trips and I love the fact that I’m doing something good for my body too!

    I loved the typical getting an ice cream at the beach as well – that really made me chuckle! “Zullen wij een ijsje halen?” SO very Dutch!

    • I’ll finally be getting a bike in the next few weeks. I like to walk and Utrecht is extremely easy to walk, since everywhere is so close, but I’m looking forward to finally getting on a bike again for the first time in 20+ years. I used to ride all the time growing up in Florida, but when we moved to North Carolina, biking really wasn’t an option anymore — too dangerous. You pretty much had road and ditch and lots of blind corners with people driving too fast to risk cycling.

  2. I loved this video!! Some things never change! :o) Some of the “bakfietsen” were so cute! And I loved the garlands made of tulips, I’ve never seen stalls selling that now.

  3. It’s great to see how bikes are such a big part of Dutch life now as well as then and that a lot of the biking habits have not changed.

    It would not surprise me if some of the bikes in that video are still on the streets today, handed down through the family like they seem to be sometime :p

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