Last Friday, I rode my Brompton to work so that I could take it on the subway to go to National Airport and rent a car for Saturday. An out-of-town friend was visiting her parents in Bethany Beach, Delaware, and I wanted to go see her. I got on the Metro elevator to take it down, and another lady got on the elevator with me. She saw my bike (it wasn't folded yet) and mentioned she wanted to get back into biking. I told her that this was a folding bike and when we got out of the elevator, I asked if she wanted to see it fold. So after I "did the magic show", she looked down at the bike and said, "YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDIN' ME!!! Wow, what a bike!!" She couldn't believe her eyes. :) ha! I covered the bike with the Brompton cover and headed to the subway train. After I got to the airport, I took the shuttle bus to the Enterprise rental area, which is within the parking garage. Carrying or rolling the folded Brompton a short way is okay, but for longer distances, I prefer to unfold it and walk the bike. I rode it through the garage to get to the door of the various car rental companies, then rolled it through the long lobby to get to Enterprise. I probably looked a bit odd standing there with my bike, when everyone else had luggage. :) After checking in, I rolled it to the Enterprise check-in lady to get the car. She looked at the bike as if, "Where are you going to put that in the car?" I told her it folded and I would put it in the trunk.
Early the next morning, I headed to Bethany Beach and it was a nice drive. I've often wished that Amtrak or Megabus would make trips there, but the closest you can get there on Amtrak is Ocean City. (Actually, you take the train to Baltimore, then a bus to Ocean City). It takes about 4 hours, and costs $124 EACH way. And even then, you're still about 15 miles from Bethany Beach! :( It's less expensive and faster to rent a car. Maybe Megabus will add the beaches to their destination list in the future - that would be nice! I think they would get A LOT of customers!
When I was getting ready to leave to head home, my friend's dad look at me and said that he really was proud of me. Proud of me?? Why? He said he thought it was great that I got around by bike, that it was such a healthy lifestyle. :) Aw, that's nice of him! I told him that I have friends who think I'm CRAZY to NOT have a car, so I appreciated hearing he was proud of me. :)
When I was returning the car and taking the bus shuttle to the Metro, the shuttle driver saw me fold the bike and bring it on. There wasn't anyone else on the bus, so he put it in park, got up and came back to me and stood there looking at the Brompton with amazement. :) He said, "That is SUCH a neat bike - - I have never seen anything like it!" He proceeded to tell me that his daughter was in college and that the distance between her dorm and the classes were a bit of a walk. He said if she had a bike, that would help so much, and having a folding bike, she could take it inside the class and not have to worry about someone stealing it. He took out a pad a paper and wrote down the Brompton name and I told him the stores he could buy one from. He was quite happy and I'm sure he couldn't wait to check one out at the store. :)
I was just looking at a bookmarked page that I have for DC2NY, another bus company that has service between DC and NYC. I was surprised to see that they now have service to Rehobeth Beach and Dewey Beach!!! Wow, that's great! It's offered between Memorial Day and Labor Day, and you can catch the bus at Dupont Circle or Union Station. The bus leaves around 7:30 a.m., and returns at 7:30 p.m. The travel time is about 2.5 hrs., and the cost is $39 each way. That's less expensive than me renting a car. However, it still wouldn't help in visiting my friend's house (in South Bethany), but it certainly could be used for a day trip or longer! :) This is GREAT news!! :) You can bring bikes and store them in the luggage area, though they said it depends on how much luggage space is available. However, that wouldn't be a problem with my Brompton, since it doesn't take much space at all. :) So, perhaps I will make another trip to the beach this summer! :) :)