More wheels; extra crayzy

Since my last post about crayzy bikes (like here), I’ve continued to catalogue the weird and wonderful vehicles I see in the streets of Shanghai.


There are plenty of these old style bicycles, refurbed to support a tray for carrying around stuff – from timber palings to construction waste and refrigerators to styrofoam.  There are also motorised versions – not so environmentally friendly, but obviously faster and easier for the driver.

I’ve been seeing quite a lot of this hotrod lately, as it is often parked in my street (when it is not being ridden by its eldery owner at great speed and with little regard for the safety of pedestrians and other motorists).


This type of motorbike also often gets spruced up to create a modern-day rickshaw.  These guys hang around tourist attractions and ferry wharves, hoping to pick up some passengers for a short trip.  Despite the allure of the fancy curtains and cushion cover in the one on the right, I am concerned by the lack of seatbelts, the flimsy metal frame (I see them being made every day in a shop across the road from our apartment) and the assumed driving style of the man up front.  Have not been brave, or drunk, enough to take a ride in one yet …

While visiting a construction site one gloomy day, I happened across this little treasure.  It’s made up of a conventional motorbike, extended to include 2 wheels at the rear, and supporting a metal framed box. 


Inside the box were two bench seats, facing each other and accessed via a rear door.  I imagine it was used to transport construction workers to the site each day.


I also discovered this tractory machine … purpose unknown.  Like the site workers, it was taking an extended break out of the rain, so I didn’t get to see it in action.

A walk around the main lake of Nanjing yielded a number of vehicular interactions, from this attention-getting bicycle/trolley hybrid …


… abandoned (?) wheelchair … and these commonly-spotted minibuses.


They are often used in new development zones, where the grandeur of the master planning vision has lead to unfeasibly long walks between the different buildings (just think Canberra or Brasilia).  For a few kuai, you can jump a ride to the next temple, cultural museum, Starbucks or toilet block.

And this little guy.  It was so cute, I wanted to take it home … but the journey back to Shanghai, along 300 kilometres along freeways, seemed a little out of its range.


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