27 September 2011

Velocio = Paul de Vivie

A quote from one of the first bicycle tourists, the Frenchman Paul de Vivie, better known as Velocio:
Eat before you are hungry
Drink before you are thirsty
Rest before you are tired
Cover up before you are cold
Peel off before you are hot
Don’t drink or smoke on tour
Never ride just to prove yourself
- Paul de Vivie*
*Paul de Vivie, who wrote as Velocio (April 29, 1853 - February 27, 1930), was publisher of Le Cycliste, an early champion of derailleur gears, and father of French bicycle touring and randonneuring. 
De Vivie was born at Pernes-les-Fontaines, France. His youth was unremarkable except for a love for the classics. His father was a prosperous Gascon with links to the nobility. He came from Saint-Germain-de-la-Sauvetat and worked as the head of post. His mother, Marthe Roman, came from Arles. Paul de Vivie lived at Tarascon, Meyzieu, and studied at Lachassagne, near Lyon until 1870.

De Vivie went into the silk industry as an apprentice and then opened his own business in St-Étienne before he was 30. He married in St-Étienne in 1876. He lived at 6 rue Brossard.
He bought his first bicycle, a penny-farthing when he was 28, in 1881. In that year he became the founding secretary of Les Cyclistes Stéphanois. The club held its first meeting at 1 rue des Arts, St-Étienne, on 23 October 1881. The address was the home of a member, A. Jourjon, and became the club's address when it was registered as a new organisation at the préfecture on 11 March 1882. Evidence that de Vivie was a reasonably prosperous man is shown in a club rule that allowed membership only to amateurs, a definition which excluded ordinary working men. Further evidence is the writer Jean-Pierre Baud's calculation that a bicycle cost 200 francs or 56 times the daily wage of an everyday worker. 

Club membership cost 17 francs the first year and 12 francs in subsequent year. Membership was open not only to those who pedalled but others who preferred machines "furnished by steam, electricity and any other propulsion". 

A friend challenged de Vivie to ride his new bicycle 100 km in six hours and he set out to the mountain resort of Chaise-Dieu. The peace, adventure and countryside changed his life - and persuaded him he needed a better bike. A year later he bought a Bayliss tricycle, followed by a tandem tricycle and others. His work in the silk industry required trips to England and it was there, in Coventry, then the centre of the world cycle industry, that he was inspired by British bicycles and joined the Cyclists' Touring Club. In 1887, he sold his business, opened the Agence Générale Vélocipédique in St-Étienne to import bikes from Coventry, and began a magazine, Le Cycliste Forézien, renamed Le Cycliste the following year.

Read further about Paul De Vivie in Wikipedia


gadisBunga said...

i ride to kurus, boleh tak? heheh~

Azizan Zolkipli said...

@gadisBunga: ride to kurus ? boleh aje. kan masing2 ada objektif peribadi yang tersendiri hihihi ...