• keksipistemama

One more about the bicycle

Now it feels that summer is so close. And as aт "everything under control" kind of mom, I'm trying to be completely ready for the new season: clothes, shoes, hats, toys, etc. Soon Em is turning 2 and we are considering getting her a two wheel "potkupyörä" (fin. potku=kick, pyörä=wheel). Picture below for those, who don't know what it is. It's ф tiny bicycle with no pedals. Suitable for toddlers before they grow big enough for an ordinary bicycle.

So here I am with a handful of websites selling all kinds of "potkupyörä" in different sizes, colors and materials. There's even a whole bunch of design bikes. And of course my weak point is wooden ones. They look so cool! I've never seen a "potkupyörä" before I moved to Finland. Still remember the first time I saw a tiny kid kicking full speed with his short legs. "What a crazy mom" - I thought back then. And now our daughter is nearly two, she knows how to ride a scooter and a four-wheel bike, climbs up a million kinds of slides and swings!

Photos borrowed from the internet

When I was 4 I had a thing called "Gnom 4". Picture below, for those who don't know what it is. Everyone, who could afford a bicycle in the 90's in Ukraine, had Gnom 4. I mean, there were literally no other options! Gnom 4 was the way to go. And look at it, it was actually meant for a 4 year old. Nowadays a 3 year old bikes on a proper two-wheel bike with one hand and holds his ice-cream in another. Gnom 4 was with me for a long time, until I was big enough to ride my father's Jopo kind of bike. Soviet made, golden color, soft leather seat and a tiny leather bag for tools on the back. Before dad became a family man, he was cruising on this golden beauty around our town and flirting with girls. With that Golden Beauty he surely was noticed by many.

Photos borrowed from the internet

I remember the first times on that bike. I was probably the same age as Em. Mom, dad and me going to the beach. Dad pedaling, mom standing on the frame in front of him. And me sitting in the basket on the back. As parents mentioned recently, the basket was not meant for kids, nor for bikes. It was just a metal basket they took out of a closet. My legs were hanging out of it and I was happy!

After I've conquered Gnom 4 for like three years, I could move to the Golden Beauty! She was still in quite good shape after all the rides to the beach. We were together everywhere for many summers. We did fall quite a few times and got some scars. One pedal usually was bent and made noise by scratching the side panel. I didn't care much about that. And my parents could hear me bike from far.

When I moved to Finland, I got a second hand Swedish bike. It was pink, so I called her Malinka (rus. raspberry). She's lived a long life before we've met, but she served her purpose well. She was part of many romantic dates with my future husband.

Today I am a mom myself. I have a brand new city bike, a helmet, a super safe child-chair on its back with all kinds of belts etc. What?! Where's all the fun with the legs hanging out of a metal basket? Well, Gnom 4 from me moved to my cousin, then to my brother. So I'm afraid he's no longer with us. Golden Beauty on the other hand is still in my parents' garage. Still golden and still beautiful. Hope I can take Em one day to ride it. Will probably put a helmet on her. Different times, different measures. Memories like this are what really matters!

Sincerely yours,


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