Warsaw Community Bikes 

  
In the last few years, I’ve been noticing more and more of these little community bikes around North America.  Warsaw, Poland was my first time actually engaging with this system, so if you are unfamiliar with them, we can figure them out together! 

(Watch our mini video here)

These community bikes, essentially appear in many major cities. Some of you may have heard of Next Bike which is something similar to Warsaw’s version of Veturilo. These are a series of locked bikes located all around Warsaw (typically found at major intersections or commuter hubs). 

  
You’ll notice a pay machine and a row of hefty cruiser bikes all the same style with a front handle bar basket and some colorful ad on the rear wheel, each with their own unique number. 

To be able to ride these bikes you need to take a few moments to register online at  Veturilo. With a phone number and a quick settlement of a registration fee/ membership of 10 złoty (roughly $3.40 CA) you will receive a PIN number that is your passcode and your phone number is your user ID. 

Off we go. After we registered using a nearby McDonald’s free wifi , Adam and I found the closest Veturilo bike rack and put our new ID and passcode to the test.

  
1. Enter your phone number (user ID) 

2. Enter your pin.

3. Enter the unique number of an available bike.

4. Take a photo of the bike lock combination that’s provided to you. (If you choose to use the lock that’s on the bike.)

5. Take your bike and go forth into the world! 

It was so easy and so worth it! The other cool thing is that the first 20minutes of cycling is free so you can just find another bike rack, return the bike and sign out another bike and continue on your way! 

Only thing is we wonder if it’s 20 minutes/ day that is free or 20 minutes per use. However even if it’s 20 minutes of free cycling a day it’s still only 8 złoty for the next hour.  

Być Batmanem!

Whenever I travel, one of the first things I make a habit of doing,  is to find a journal. 

The trick is to not just pick any old lined notebook but find one that will remind you of the place you’ve been. 

  
In this case. I found Batman. Written on the cover of this particular journal are these words. 

“Zawsze bądź sobą, chyba… Ze możesz być Batmanem!” 

“Always be yourself, unless you can be Batman!”

Those that know me best, know I strongly pursue the mantra of being true to oneself. Those who know me better, know I also look to Batman for major decision making. 

Needless to say I think I found the perfect travel journal for this trip! 

  
I’m a very meticulous person and I think if the world ever came to an end (besides saving all my friends and family) I would most likely end up as the historian.

I always log my entries by date, time and location. I’ll usually even include a calendar that summarizes the daily activities in case I don’t have time to write and wish to recall what events occurred that day. 

  
I’m not much of a scrap booker but I take the time to keep ticket stubs, plane tickets and business cards and staple them chronologically in my journals. 

It may seem a little overboard but it really doesn’t take much time. Plus, years down the road it’s often rewarding to look back and be able to reminisce pretty accurately all the things I experienced.  

 
My journals are by no means “pretty,” or visually appealing but they carry a lot of energy. On more than one occasion I’ve had people be drawn to my journals and comment on their richness just by merely being in proximity. (I attribute some of this to my tendency to also spill food and random things onto my journals so they really engage multiple senses …) You can “taste” the experience … Literally. 

My Warsaw Batman journal, so far has recipes, foods I’ve eaten, places I’ve been and things I’ve done and want to do. 

  
I believe it’s important to track – not only in your travels but in your life – where you are now, where you were and where you want to be. It keeps you accountable for your progress as a human and serves as a way of inspiring yourself to get off your butt and do something. Or maybe serves as a way of reminding yourself that you are worthwhile and have grown and should be content with your own achievements. 

  

Travelling Tips to Joshua Tree

Travelling Tips To Jtree:

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1. Sign Up for Express Memberships

I flew into Palms Springs Regional airport and landed roughly around 19:15. I hustled over to the car rental line before it got crazy and picked up my rental at Dollar Rental. Most rental companies if not all have a membership program and they usually give you deals and express pick up. A good idea is to sign up before hand as an express member so you can expedite your vehicle pick up. And I always book online to get the best rates.

Mitsubishi Mirage Dollar Car

Mitsubishi Mirage Dollar Car

2. Get the Car, Then The Luggage

While I’m checking out my Mitsubishi Mirage, the luggage carousel starts to turn and my bags arrive just as a finish signing my life away on the rental conditions. I just saved myself about an hour from waiting for the luggage carousel and then waiting in line for the car rental.

My Metolius crash pad and North Face gear bag

My Metolius crash pad and North Face gear bag

3. Know Where You’re Going

I know this seems like a common sense kind of thing, but whenever I’m travelling I always take a look at the map either on the plane or while I’m waiting at the airport for luggage/ car rentals.  I’m not a big fan of the GPS thing, and I prefer maps myself but I am able to adapt to whatever the situation offers me. Once I get to my car I look at the map again and orientate myself out of the airport.

Map, Gear and Red Stilletoes for climbing in Jtree and cousinsw in Palm Springs

4.  Always Know The Streets Names Before and After

One of the navigational trips I picked up when I was younger was I always make a mental note of the streets before and after the turn/ exit I intend to take. That way you can either anticipate your turn/ exit or at least realize when you’ve gone too far.

Coyote Corner Watering Hole

Coyote Corner Watering Hole

5. Get Water, Groceries and More WATER!

Before you hit the Joshua Tree National Park, you’ll pass through Yucca Valley, the town. This is the best place to load up on groceries, fire wood and water. If you’re looking for free water then once you to get to Park BLVD, (The turn off when you see NOMAD outdoor store on the right) you’ll see an Old Timey Wood building called JOSHUA TREE GENERAL STORE. They have  a water tap around the back and just request donations, but seriously go inside and buy yourself a cool souvenir instead! This place is super climber friendly and also have showers for a fee.

Coyote Corner

Coyote Corner

Lastly, Be Nice to People

This is another one of those common sense things but you’d be surprised at how beneficial a little please and thank you can be. Since I arrived super late all the camp sites were full. As I was driving around the Hidden Valley Loop I came to the very last campsite and got out of my car to see if it was available, but to my dismay it was already inhabited. As I turned around back to my car, a gentlemen approached me from a nearby campsite and offered to move his van and let me share his campsite with his family! What an awesome family! They’re from Santa Barbara and were taking their kids on an educational camping field trip to Joshua tree! HOW COOL IS THAT?? What amazing parents. They had such amazing kids and the relationships between the 9 person family was truly touching. The kids were polite, friendly and loving and obviously well learned from the parents. Anyways, given them an amazing shout out if your ever in Santa Barbara, CA and you need printing services please go to their company SBPrinter.com. A generous family like that is bound to give great personable service.

Hidden Valley Campsite #30

Hidden Valley Campsite #30

So, first night not too shabby! Since I arrived when it was pitch black.. I can’t wait to see what Joshua Tree will look  like in the morning.

Cheers,

.:Melba:.