In a few days I am coming up on my sixth month anniversary of using my bicycle as my exclusive form of transportation.
It is almost winter here on the rainy Wet Coast and I figure I should learn to build an ark or at least get started on that Stand Up Paddle board I am planning to make. It is hard to fathom riding up town today in the deluge that is pounding us but I really need to pick up a gift for my cousin’s birthday. I keep glancing out at the ripples in the puddles and waiting to get a reprieve from the watery punishment we are receiving.
I will be honest, when I was younger, I waited to get my driver’s license. The main reason was I could not justify paying to drive a car to get from point A to Z. Cars have always been a luxury item rather than a necessity to me. Insurance, maintenance, repairs, and gas. These items all add up very fast. We were mostly a one car family. When we had two vehicles we shared three ways. I remember carpooling or taking transit, so the other members of my family could run errands or get to work. When I was married the only time we had two vehicles was when I worked, and even then it seemed like I was paying for transportation to get to work to pay for transportation. I did earn money beyond what the commuting costs were, but a huge portion of my wage went to pay for the convenience of driving. I believe I worked it out to the first hour of every day I worked covered the cost of getting to and from work. Just using the bridge to get across the river cost me $6 a day. That is huge! There was also the cost of my time. I used to drive anywhere from an hour and a half a day up to three hours depending on traffic. I was a slave to a lifestyle I did not want to be a part of. My health suffered as did my sense of well being.
When I got back in the saddle again, I felt in control of my body and my life. Sure it was a challenge, but I kept pushing myself and the benefits were awesome.
- Weight loss
- Increased endurance
- Muscle building
- Toned body
- Natural “high”
- Less illness
- Better sleep
- Less tiredness
- Environmentally friendly
And those are just some of the added bonuses of biking.
Eventually I will need a vehicle again, but I plan to use it sparingly and only when I have to. If I can avoid having a car on the road I will. This will include only having it insured part of the time or only using it to get to places that would be impossible without a car.
I found myself when I started cycling again. I don’t want to lose that.
Happy anniversary to my bike. Six months in a committed relationship and we have been together for twenty years overall. You have seen me through some of the best adventures and helped me out of the lowest points in life. I look forward to a long and healthy life with you.