Follow the Red Brick Road

I travelled Kansas many years ago but, now that I’m in Germany, I must follow the red brick road — if I’m on a bicycle. On foot, I must follow the brown brick road. These strictures are taken seriously in Germany. Whether on or off a bike, the two roads seldom cross. When they do, a collision might result.

Red vs. Brown Brick Road

Germany appears to be a health-conscious population. Many people ride bicycles, perhaps women more than men, although I often find couples riding together. They ride on the red brick track which parallels the brown brick track that pedestrians use. It is important that the pedestrian never step onto the bicycle path, as these bicycles come silently from behind and whiz by. The bicycle has the right of way.

Europeans Ride Seriously

Even in the Rain – Jenny Sirimis

Bicycle riding is common throughout Europe. Many bicycle tracks exist. There is one track of 2,175 miles which crosses Europe, of which 580 miles are in Germany. Another track of 225 miles follows the Ems River which originates in Northwest Germany and flows to the North Sea. This is a very popular route as the area is flat lowlands. This river forms the border between Germany and The Netherlands and was long a boundary dispute between the two countries. This was not settled until 2014.

The state of North Rhine-Westphalia where I am house sitting is the number one cycling area in Germany. The government takes bicycle transportation very seriously, conscious of health, environmental and climate concerns. Over 2 billion dollars have been spent to allow bicyclists to follow the red brick road along some 6,213 miles throughout the country.

Need a break? –

Don’t Own a Bicycle?

If you don’t own a bike, it’s very easy to rent one. These bikes are usually found at train stations for visitors and residents alike. You can order a bike electronically and pay by credit card. Each bike has its own identifying number and its location can be found online. These bikes are locked, but payment is followed by a code for unlocking. The bike can be deposited anywhere after riding and its location noted. It’s now ready for the next rider.

Cars once replaced the horse. Will the bicycle now replace the car?

Fact: It is predicted that in the future 25% of all traffic routes in North Rhine-Westphalia will be bicycle routes
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Author: Warren R. Johnson

I am a US citizen travelling in Europe. I have retired from two long-lasting careers: an ordained minister with an exclusive ministry in sacred music (organist-choirmaster), and a book dealer (2 stores and Internet selling). Another shorter career was as a data manager in medical research. Today, I am pursuing a writing career.

4 thoughts on “Follow the Red Brick Road”

  1. I would like for bicycles and trains to completely eliminate cars. Why not? Europe is showing us the way in automobile-centric America.

    Bicycles are the most energy-efficient means of transportation. They bring us closer to the earth and to each other. They’re good for our health and the environment. What’s not to like?

    I didn’t realize there are so many bike trails in Europe. When I took my bike to Europe in 1975, I had to ride on the highways. It was a great experience anyway.

    Thanks for the post!

  2. Interesting! Hope you are well and happy. I’ll be in Panama month of December and am getting excited. I’m sorry you won’t be there. Be safe wherever you are wandering! Regards, Maggie Taniguchi & Ed

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