Boston Bike Story: Linda Alila

Why do you bike?

I’ve been biking ever since I was a kid, and I started biking in Boston six years ago. Boston in the first city I’ve ever biked in. Weather permitting, I’ll commute on my bike from JP to Downtown Boston, and then I like to do some longer rides for fun.

Driving stresses me out. It terrifies me to drive in Boston. There’s also autonomy on a bike, and Boston is compact enough that you can really get around on a bike. Since everything is close by, it makes riding easier, and the infrastructure is getting better every year. When I’m biking, I have the most control over where I’m going and how long it takes to get there.

What is your favorite experience on a bike?

Whenever I’m riding over the Mass Ave. bridge and have the view of the Charles on both sides is when I’m the happiest.

What would you tell people who don’t bike in Boston?

That it’s great. And it’s easier than you think. Boston offers free classes for women on how to ride a bike. They also have a class about how to ride in the city. The city website is a great resource. There is a whole guide about bike maintenance [including the BCU bike workshop!] taking bikes on the T, different types of bikes and more. I use it a lot. It is really well done, and if you are thinking about riding you should check it out.

— Linda Alila, Jamaica Plain