A New Bike and Some New Friends

We Heart Betty Foy

From Wikipedia:

Betty Foy is a character appearing in William Wordsworth’s poem “The Idiot Boy” and is the mother of the title character. In the poem, Betty is caring for a sick neighbor; in desperation, she sends her mentally handicapped son Johnny on horseback to fetch a doctor from the nearby town. When he has not returned after several hours, she grows frantic and sets out to find him. Eventually, she discovers him near a waterfall, his pony feeding. She leads him home and on the way they are met by the sick neighbor, who has, as it were, worried herself well and found the strength to help look for the boy.

Betty Foy is also a gorgeous, lugged-steel mixte from Rivendell Bicycle Works of Walnut Creek, CA. Betty Foy the bike was named after Betty Foy the mother in the poem. We like the connection.

A Betty Foy has been on Michael’s personal wish list for some time now and we finally called Dave at Rivendell and placed an order last week. The bike was ready in just a few days and we went over and picked it up this morning. The guys did a fantastic job building the bike and Michael is absolutely thrilled with the ride (she immediately described it as “lively, yet smooth”). We still have a few details to attend to like installing Honjo fenders and a Peterboro basket, but she’s already smitten. [There’s more to come on the bike later. —ed.]

Our visit to Rivendell was great fun. Dave was a gracious host, spending most of the morning working out the details of our purchase and showing us around the facilities. It was really cool meeting Grant, though I have to admit I was a bit awestruck talking with a person I’ve been following from afar since the 1980s. Pretty quickly Grant and I discovered we have fly fishing in common and we had a great time chatting about soft hackles, dead drifts, and fishing the hatches on Hat Creek. In fact, everyone we met at Rivendell was friendly and gracious enough to take time out of their busy day to chat with us (thanks guys!). If you’re ever in the S.F. Bay Area, be sure to stop by Rivendell to see some beautiful bikes and meet some great people.

Rivendell Bicycle Works

Disclosure: Rivendell is a sponsor of this website.

18 Responses to “A New Bike and Some New Friends”

  • Rick and Erin says:

    It’s a beautiful bike–but not as beautiful as the smile Michael will have while riding it!


  • Bob Baxter says:

    Ah, you must have got the last one in stock Alan. I ordered one this week and will have to wait until march for delivery. It’s getting hard to get my leg over with anything on the rear carrier and a step through frame has been on my mind for awhile. I’ll be looking forward to a test report on it.

  • Alan says:

    Hi Bob,

    You must be looking for a 58cm? From what I understand, they still have a number of 52’s in stock. You might check to see what is available in the Yves Gomez which is the same bike in a different color and decal set.

    Best regards,

  • Alan says:

    @Rick and Erin

    Thanks guys – that’s very sweet. :-)


  • Bob Baxter says:

    Hi Alan,
    Yeah, I didn’t think about the frame size. The Yves Gomez is the same frame with a $200 custom paint job and still out of stock. I decided to take the Betty Foy and spend the $200 on good parts. If I were a teenager I might have problems riding what’s considered a “girl’s bike”, but at this stage of the game—–who cares? Still looking forward to the tests.


  • Michael(the wife:)) says:

    Rick and Erin- you guys are too sweet! I can’t wait ’til we get all the bikes together and go for a ride! I LOVE this bike! :D

  • Rob Mackenzie says:

    Michael: For anyone who has to share their home with 13 bikes, it is only fair that 6 or 7 of them be yours and what a fabulous addition to that 6 or 7!

  • Alan says:


    “Michael: For anyone who has to share their home with 13 bikes, it is only fair that 6 or 7 of them be yours and what a fabulous addition to that 6 or 7!”

    It’s not quite as bad as it sounds since a majority of the bikes are on loan for review. I have to admit though, her share of the keepers is not quite 50% … :-)


  • Jeff says:

    Yeah, I was kinda thinkin’ it was Michael’s turn to get a new bike and boy did she ever! Congrat’s on the Betty!

  • Mike says:

    Congratulations, Michael! It’s a beautiful, beautiful bike! Ride it in good health for many, many years. I hope to see you out there on the trail some day. I’ll be the guy on the Mercier mixte. Aren’t mixtes just a gorgeous design? I shed my qualms about riding a “girl’s bike” in two seconds when I saw the clean lines and thoughtful design of my mixte (now one of two in my stable).

  • Karen says:

    Congrats to Michael! Someday I would like a mixte too….

  • Dottie says:

    Congrats, Michael! I like your style ;)

  • Michael(the wife:)) says:

    Great minds think alike, eh, Dottie? ;D

  • Cathy says:

    Your bike is lovely and I hope you have many safe and enjoyable rides on it. thanks for sharing!

  • Lovely Bicycle! says:

    Congratulations on this great new bike!
    Now the two of you have a nice his-and-hers pair of Rivendells!
    Looking forward to some more detailed impressions and comparisons with the Pashley Princess.

  • Ryan says:

    Gorgeous bike hope you enjoy it, I rebuilt an old mixte for my wife for her birthday and little did I know at the time but I painted it “Betty Foy blue”. My wife has named it blue bell and loves riding it and gets lots of compliments on her basket too.

    Hope you get miles of smiles from Betty


  • sol star says:

    sad story – beautiful bicycle- so tragic!

  • EcoVelo » Blog Archive » Another Year Gone By says:

    […] A New Bike and Some New Friends — Because the bike made Michael very happy, and because it was such a treat to meet the wonderful crew at Rivendell. […]

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