Back in the City of Angels, I came across these Bike Share Stations, called PunPun Bike Share. A really great idea. Easy, cheap, good for the environment and healthy....well, if you survive a bike ride in Bangkok.
It's a great idea and it is bitterly needed in a city which drowns in traffic jams every day, except for New Year, when the city of Bangkok is empty. I would love to do something for the environment, hence I also take public transportation, but riding a bike?
In an environment where the most basic rights of a pedestrian are treated with ignorance
and right-out life threatening maneuvers, it is already a challenge to safely walk on a sidewalk. Food stalls are put up on sidewalks, which force the pedestrian to move onto the street level. Motorcycle taxis are driving on sidewalks. So do other motorcycles. And they drive with or against the traffic in one way streets. Just yesterday I have seen a pedestrian who got nearly run over by a motorcycle on the sidewalk. And you know what happened? The pedestrian apologized to the motorcycle driver!!!
So, even where you have your own dedicated space - the sidewalk - you rights are neglected and the Police are doing nothing against it. Can you imagine having to share the street with cars, motorcycles, buses, trucks, taxis, dogs, trash, people who push their food stalls as a bicycle rider? Yes, I know there are marked lanes for bicycles, but they are being ignored most of the time. It's not like in Germany where the driver of a car doesn't even dare to cross the solid line of the bike-track.
Yes, I see them...rarely, but I see them, the brave ones who ride a bicycle and to me it looks like a risky business. So, unless the Thai society changes and respects the rights of other participants of traffic, I would never dare to join your club.