How Cyclists Behave in Taipei
A couple of days ago I was walking in the direction of National Taiwan University. Then I decided to go back and get something to eat, so I turned around. Suddenly, I heard a shrill cry and saw a woman falling down to my left side. She had been riding a bicycle and I assume she was trying to overtake me. But because there were many people on the street and there wasn’t much room for such a bold maneuver she had come too close, and when I turned around she tried to avoid me and fell. The crazy thing is that she looked at me angrily, as though I had been the cause of the accident. “您好嗎?” (are you okay?), I asked. She didn’t reply, but simply got up and left muttering to herself.
After this episode I decided to make a video to show you how cyclists in Taipei regularly ride their bikes in the middle of the street, even if there are plenty of people. They overtake, sometimes they ride pretty fast. I think this is a dangerous behaviour, especially because in the middle of a crowd it’s hard to see clearly if there are children or animals, and they could hurt someone, or hurt themselves. I really don’t get why cyclists are allowed to ride their bikes on the pavement. They should rather have special lanes only for themselves.
Unfortunately, the video is very shaky because I was holding a few bags and had to film with my phone, which has a terrible camera. Anyway, it’s just to give you a general idea. You can see how cyclists try to overtake people, and you can also see that they come from behind me, so I cannot see them. The street wasn’t extremely crowded that day, especially the campus itself was relatively quiet, but you can imagine how it looks like on the days and hours where it’s full of people everywhere.
I also think it’s nice to take videos of the city, because they show better than pictures how it feels like to walk around on a street in Taipei.