Friday, June 3, 2011

Pedicab Through Frederick

     One of the remarkable things that I observed during my time in Dublin for the 2009 - 2010 academic year was a preponderance of little rickshaws pulled around on bikes called pedicabs or eco-cabs.  I thought it was really neat because the regular cabs there cost somewhere between an arm and your first born child while these friendly bicycle chaps were more than happy to take me anywhere in the city for just a small tip.  It was one of the many charms of Europe that I wanted to bring back with me, so I was happily surprised to find an enterprising company in our own downtown Frederick took up the suggestion the summer after my return before I even said anything!
     You may have seen the pedicabs of MacFawn's Green Rides roaming the city in search of fares, but if you haven't yet taken advantage of their amazing service, I figured that there might be a few things about them that you don't know, so when I happened to cross right in front of pedicab driver Brandon Novotny, I stopped him for a quick interview.
      He said that they will take you anywhere in the downtown area for a flat rate of of just $2!  You might feel like they are a little hard to come by because there are usually only two of them biking around the city, but if you don't happen to see one around, just text your location to (301) 246-2221 and the nearest cab will come your way for a quick pick up.
     Brandon said that what customers really seem to like about the pedicabs is that they can go places that cars can't.  Imagine that you park your car on E. 2nd St. so that you can pick up a gift for a friend's birthday at a shop in Shab Row or Everedy Square and then want to go to his party at one of the restaurants along Carroll Creek Linear Park.  Rather than trying to re-park your car down on Patrick St. and then walk to the creek area, you can text a pedicab which can drive on the creek walk and drop you right in front of your destination.  No regular cab can do that!
     The drawback of pedicabs for me was that I felt a little bad about making some poor guy drag my heavy weight around, but Brandon said that he is really glad to have the exercise, can take 3 or 4 people, and makes sure not to work for longer than he can handle.
"A lot of people think it's real hard and just a strenuous job but I actually have a blast doing it," he said. "Meeting new people and staying in shape at the same time; you can't beat that." 

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