You wake up, go to work/classes, get back home. On weekends, you wake up late, go to a food joint with friends and get back home. And throughout the day, you complain about traffic, you complain how there is no decent place to visit anymore, you complain how the authorities should fix this city and finally you complain how your gym visits have become irregular and the doctor has started complaining about your cholesterol. In fact if you are stuck in traffic for longer than an hour, you probably come up with a way to fix this city all on your own. And of course it goes right out of your head at the end of the journey.
Wouldn’t it be nice to change this life of yours?
What if, you could be anywhere in the city in 30-60 minutes in rush hour traffic? What if your Friday morning breakfast would be beside a river in a small village hotel with a view to die for? What if you exercised and had fun doing so?
At BDCyclists, that is exactly what they do. On May, 2011, Mozammel Haque initiated BDCyclists with his few friends. With their bicycles, they have made weekends fun and weekdays easy.
This initial small group is now a crowd of 33000 with more than a thousand regular riders. Three official rides each week and many other events keep the community constantly in touch.
First is Bike Friday, the most popular event by far. Every Friday morning at 5:30AM, more than 50 cyclists show up to visit the outskirts of Dhaka. After a lovely breakfast and a fantastic doze of greeneries, they get back to their lives invigorated. Those who don’t have a cycle yet, rent one and join in on the fun. This ride is meant to be easy enough for anyone out there.
Need some adventure? Josshila Saturday is exactly what you are looking for. Trail rides, long distance rides, fast paced rides, endurance rides, you name it, and they have it. The Saturday event is for serious riders who wish to push themselves. Each one is different and requires different set of skills. Their favorite places include Rupganj Shalbon, Bossila and Mawa scenic routes and Birulia riversides. These crazy ones have already completed long distance endurance rides of 200, 300 and 400KM in 24 hours.
What if you needed to learn to pedal first? Not to worry, Beginner’s Lesson is waiting for you. Taking place on Saturday in Abahani field, these volunteers teach cycling to those interested free of cost. You don’t even need a bike to learn. They will bring one for you.
On special occasions rides are declared to celebrate. There were rides to celebrate Eid, Victory Day, Women’s Day, Pahela Baishakh and many more. On BDC’s first birthday, more than 200 members showed up to celebrate with a ride through Dhaka. Recently they organized their first time trial to test the performance levels of their enthusiastic riders.
64GoodActs is a very special project of BDC. It is a program in which BDC is riding to all 64 districts and helping out a school, family or someone in need to the extent that they can. The last act took place in Teknaf with a 160k ride where they took gifts for the school children in Teknaf.
Apart from these three events BDC takes part in organizing Critical Mass on the last Friday of each month. Critical Mass is an event where cyclists come together in street to show other motor vehicles how cycle can be a mode of transport too. In September, 2011 the first Critical Mass was organised which created a buzz in media and general public.
BDCylists is neither an elite athlete group, nor people who are training to compete in races. They are just general people like you or me. They have a common goal of staying healthy in this stressful Dhaka life and ride for recreation, health, and sheer fun.
Currently the group is overseen by 9 moderators. The current Moderators are; Mozammel Haque, Fuad Ahasan Chowdhury, Mainul Islam Rahat, Drabir Alam, Hamidur Rashid Tapu, Noor A Nazia, Faisal Nizam and Arifur Rahman Khan. They are helped by 50+ cycle enthusiasts called Volunteers & Activists.
Their common goal is to make promote cycling, taking safety measures while riding, create safe roads in Dhaka city, encourage women riders and above all create awareness among people to see cycle as a vehicle for all and to make life more fun for the city living people. To be member of this group type https://www.facebook.com/groups/bdcyclists/ and register yourself and then join the riders on weekend with your bike and safety gears (which includes helmet, gloves, front light & back light). For more information please check their youtube link http://youtube.com/bdcyclists
Next Friday, when your alarm rings at 6:30, please wake up with a smile on your face. Because when you are on a cycle, the whole wide world is just around the corner.