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Hi Melissa,

There have been so many occasions where I have had to explain that bicycle fashion is more than just lycra based uniforms with obnoxious logos.  

What you are doing gives me hope that the image of cycling for women (and men) can be more broad than the aforementioned stereotypical attire.

I have always been drawn to the idea of living in San Francisco but I have no idea what it would be like out there.  Can you give me an idea of what your life is like out there?

-Jeremy

Hi Jeremy,

Thank you so much for your sweet note. One of the most rewarding things to come out of this blog is that I feel like I’m now part of a larger community that sees cycling beyond the lycra and logos.

I always have a great time when I’m on my bike and I want to show the world how fun it can be. Hopefully we can inspire more people to ride. Especially people that don’t relate to the road warrior image.

San Francisco is absolutely my favorite city. I’ve lived in a lot of amazing places: Honolulu, Portland, Nashville, New York City, Florence, and Milan. But I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. In my mind it’s The City.

To answer your question, here are 7 reasons why I love San Francisco:

The first two are obvious: 1) San Francisco Bike Party and 2) this ride across the Golden Gate Bridge.

3) It’s beautiful. Not in the same way that Chicago is architecturally stunning, but there are so many unexpected vistas that delight. You’ll be walking up a hill, turn around and be smacked in face with the gorgeousness of the view.

4) It’s full of weirdos. There are a lot of reasons for this. San Francisco’s well-known counter culture was made famous by the Beat Poets and the Summer of Love. Today this aspect of the city is mostly symbolic. But it’s a powerful symbol that still draws people by the thousands in search of a way of life beyond the mainstream.

5) The vibrant LGBT presence. Most people in the city recognize queer as a totally normal way to live and love. Pride Weekend isn’t even called Gay Pride (or LGBT Pride) anymore. It’s just However-You-Want-To-Let-Your-Freak-Flag-Fly Pride Mass Party centered around the Castro.

6) San Francisco is a city of strivers. People move here in search of new opportunities, greater social freedoms, and a lifestyle balanced between city and nature. And while you have to work hard to stay here (it’s expensive!), the rewards are awesome. This means that people don’t take the great life they find here for granted.

7) The positive vibes. Around here, it's a pretty big faux pas to complain about your life. I experienced some culture shock when I moved to the East Coast for college and found that complaints were considered standard small talk.

In San Francisco, if you’re not working to improve your situation (or the lives of others), people don’t want to just hear about what sucks. San Francisco has even turned our perpetual fog blanket into a lovable mascot named Karl.

This is just the tip of the iceberg-of-my-love-for-San-Francisco. In fact, the city means so much to me and my fiancé that we’re getting married in San Francisco’s City Hall this October. It’s one of the most beautiful buildings in the city and true palace of the people. San Francisco is the city that brought us together and a constant source of inspiration. Of course it's part of our special day.

For more on what makes SF great keep reading Bike Pretty.

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