This article was sent to me by a friend and really does help explain my insistence on riding 99.9% of the time for transportation, even when I have the option of hitching a ride, taking the bus or skipping out altogether. Towards the end of my car ownership, I would always regret it when I drove, but I would feel pressured into driving at times by “bad” weather, running late, or feeling like I had a lot to carry.
Now that the option to drive is removed (barring the offers I get from friends, family and coworkers – and even sometimes offers from strangers!), it’s simply a matter of planning. Which sometimes I fail at. Especially that ‘on time’ part, but I was still late to things when I had a car. Anyway, leading up to and since selling my car, the perception of what I can do on a bike has shifted and I hardly think twice about it now. It’s raining? Pack a poncho and a change of clothes in case I need them. Going shopping? Make sure my panniers are empty, or hook on a cargo trailer if we’re getting serious. Now when giving directions I automatically calculate the time and route for biking, and have to adjust when I have to give driving directions (don’t ask me for the nearest parking garage or which highway exit to take!).
At any rate, there is a lot that we sacrifice, perhaps without realizing it, when we choose the apparent convenience* of driving a car. And there’s a heck of a lot of joy to be found when you slow your roll. Don’t believe me? Try it yourself!
* wouldn’t it be more convenient to skip the gym, save $9k a year, and avoid oil changes and other expensive maintenance? #justsaying