Adrian Sinden, lives inCardiff, he’s a former restaurateur turned writer and this is the first year he’s taken part in the World Naked Bike Ride.
By Adrian Sinden
I found out about the World Naked Bike Ride by pure chance. The organisers of the Cardiff event, Nick Wysoczanskyj and Ronnie Basson, had created a Facebook profile with the name World Naked Bike Ride.
One day it just popped up in ‘suggested friends’ box and my interest was piqued.
When I read their profile and followed their link to the World Naked Bike Ride’s site, the aims and message of the event appealed to me.
That message, as I understand it, seems to be threefold.
Firstly, an environmental message, which in essence says that by being naked we are stripping away the unnecessary trappings, and travelling in an environmentally friendly way that harms no one.
Secondly, naked cyclists could not be more vulnerable, and with a British Medical Association report pointing out that in 2008, cars killed 2565 cyclists, attention clearly needs to be drawn to that vulnerability.
Finally, the ride is a celebration of the body, promoting a good self-image via a fun form of exercise.
The ride itself was absolutely exhilarating. We started off from behind the National Museum of Wales, where we first assembled and undressed.
That was the most nerve racking part for me, but once done, and in the company of so many other naked people, the nerves quickly evaporated.
We set off as a group and cycled past the student union, where the first of the cheering, clapping and waving began, and that was to set the tone for the ride.
Everywhere we rode, in front of the castle, down Westgate Street, along Lloyd George Avenue, past the Assembly building, back up into the centre of Cardiff, along Mill Lane and alongside the New Shopping centre, we were greeted with such good will that it gave all the riders that I spoke to an enormously positive feeling of acceptance and encouragement.
I heard of not a single negative incident.
All along the route, people would stop and ask us what we were cycling in aid of, which gave us the opportunity to relate the messages of the ride, and spread the word.
We even gained a couple of extra riders who joined us, ad-hoc, outside the Assembly, and stayed with us until we finally stopped and dressed in Sofia Gardens.
All in all, an amazing event, thoroughly enjoyed by the participants, and from the reception I saw, thoroughly enjoyed by the public as well.
This may have been my first naked bike ride, but it will definitely not be my last.