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Last week, I was able to mix a little pleasure with a business trip to Europe. Philippec already has posted a photo report of our meeting up to see the Tour of Flanders. http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?t=56773 I had some auto problems near Ghent (Gent if you are Flemish and Gand if you are French) a few days earlier. While I was waiting for help, I pulled my rented auto to the side of the road. Within 5 minutes, an old lady on a bike was beating on the windows of the car and screaming something that I could not understand in Flemish. Then several other cyclists passed by and smacked my car. Then it dawned on me, I was blocking a bike lane. I was at the beginning of my trip and did not realize how significant bike lanes and paths were in Belgium. I have never seen as good a bike lane systems as I saw in Flanders and respect for cyclists -- cars even give you the right of way where the bike lane crosses the entrance/exit to freeways. But, don't block a bike lane with your car or you will incur the wrath that I did. Although I was not in the mood for irony at the time, it is kind of ironic that I would be perceived as being insensitive to the rights of cyclists when I had a bike in the trunk on my car and only was in Belgium because I had come for the Tour of Flanders.
 

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Guilty as charged!

Rollo Tommassi said:
that probably made your offense even worse!
I have no doubt that everyone noticed the French registration number on the car, which I picked up at Paris-CDG.

One other irony: The alleged English speaking staff in the Paris office of the agency from which I rented the car, had much more difficulty communicating with me and understanding my multiple telephone calls to them than I had communicating with and understanding the Flemish mechanic and tow truck driver who ultimately rescued me.
 

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No kidding mate. They are serious cyclists around in Europe, but they are mainly utility type bicycles. Alot of Europeans commute and go about their daily work with bicycles and the bicycle lane is obviously vital. Cars will have to give way to pedestrians and cyclists. I like it. Alot.
 
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