This Swiftmas we’re showcasing 9 standout gift guides from community members from Seattle to Manila.


On the 7th Day of Swiftmas….  Marlowe Apeles

Hello Marlowe! Tell us a little about yourself: Hi, I’m Marlowe, the head mechanic behind the wrench (and founder) at BudolbuddyPh, our independent bike workshop here in Manila. 🛠 Growing up with Lego fueled my love for tinkering, and it’s funny how that childhood joy has translated into creating playful and personalized steel “neo-retro” bike builds. My journey into bike mechanics began with restoring and collecting vintage bikes and parts. Now, every bike part is like a Lego block in my hands, ready to be combined to craft something unique. Outside the workshop, I enjoy the casual gravel spin and daydreaming about the next bike tour. Hopefully a tour up Seattle? ✨

What are you riding here? My Salmon Crust Romanceur Disc (M)

What are your favorite Swift bags for this ride and what are you packing in them at this time of year? My daily commute bag is a Coyote Catalyst Pack up front and a Sidekick Stem Pouch (strapped to my saddle for tools). For tours, I always use my pair of Junior Ranger Ranger Panniers (Sold Out! Restock coming January 2024) and a custom frame bag sewn by my friend here in Manila. 😀

Tell us about a highlight of riding in 2023? We just came back from an epic 19-day bike tour across Japan! We kicked things off in Nagoya, soaking in the city vibes. Eventually, we cruised our way to the foot of the mighty Mount Fuji, concluding our journey in Tokyo, the heart of Japan. We passed through Kiso Valley, pedaling through quaint old Japanese villages frozen in time, rolling down the historic Old Nakasendo Road, and taking in endless mountains blanketed in those gorgeous red autumn leaves. An added bonus was the chance to meet incredible people in Japan, like the Swift crew and everyone from Blue Lug. 😄 It was like the ultimate chill ride mixed with a dash of historical vibes and a sprinkle of nature’s beauty. No pressure, just us, our bikes, and the incredible landscapes of Japan. So, yeah, we’re back, still riding that post-tour high and ready to spill all the deets on our laid-back adventure. 🍁😎

2023 favorite ride snack? Because of Japan, Tuna Onigiri and Egg Salad Sandwich

Shop Marlowe’s Gift Guide