- It makes me ridiculously happy to pull onto a sidewalk and see three dozen bikes parked there, and know that almost everyone at the meeting got there on a bike. I didn't snap a picture because I'm not yet at the stage of my blogging career where photography is second nature, but rest assured, there were plenty of bikes, and I hope to get to the point where it's common to walk down a street in Baltimore and see three dozen bikes (although hopefully with better parking).
- I was quite happy to see a diversity of ages and genders represented... okay yeah it was still largely white males in the 30-50 range but maybe a fifth of the attendees were chicks? Not so much racial diversity but hey, gotta start somewhere. And a focus on diversity (both of the members of the group and of the eventual board of directors) was one of the main things talked about so I am pretty confident that this isn't just going to become a conglomeration of vehicular cycling advocates with their insane hatred of bike lanes.
- Still a little confused about how advocacy at this level actually WORKS. Like, say you have an awesome idea, like taking out all the on-street parking on Calvert Street and putting up a sweet two-way bike lane with a barrier. (Note to politicians: steal my idea!) If you're like me and have no political connections or desire to BE a politician, what then? But I guess this is stuff I'll learn as I get more involved!
- The most contentious debate seemed to be about the name of the group, and at some points nobody really had anything to say and I wondered if the facilitator was getting peeved. I don't know if that means we're all on the same page or if everyone was just really shy.
So anyway, it was a fun experience even if I got a little stir-crazy by the end. (Eight hours in a room with no windows, oh my!) I am looking forward to being a part of this group even if I'm still a little new to the idea of organized advocacy in general. Once again, BikeMore's the name, and I'm sure I'll be posting lots more about it!