It's National Bike to Work Week! I loooove to ride my bike. I like just randomly riding around, exploring things, peeking into people's yards to see what kind of patio furniture they have, and most of all, I like not driving. I'm a really bad driver and I really despise it. Driving is such a waste of time! I'd rather be my own machine.
So I bike. Today, I biked to the produce stand. When I got there, it was closed. Oh well.
Me at the produce stand that was closed. Bummer.
A few weeks ago I mentioned to my wonderful, cycling-enthusiast friend Jennifer that I wanted to start biking more for errands and whatnot. She's a city planner who has spent much of her career developing bike-friendly communities, as well as a fellow preschooler mom to a precious little boy who I think had a bike helmet before he had a pacifier. So, a few days later, some handbooks on urban cycling appeared in my son's cubby at school -- two cycling and walking-related coloring books (I assumed those are for my son), and one pamphlet titled, Riding Confidently, Legally, and Safely. Apparently she had heard about my driving skills and had concern for my safety should I make good on my plans.
When I was a kid, I would ride my bike all over town and just look at things. I explored neighborhoods. I looked at spooky houses. I remember the first time I figured out that riding against the wind was much more satisfying than riding with it as long as there was a hill immediately following. And, if I am being completely honest, I rode around and picked up dead, flattened frogs and saved them in a paper bag in case I needed to exact revenge on someone. It's true. I'm disgusting. So if you went to Clearwood Junior High School and ever found a dead frog in your book bag, it was me getting you back for wronging me somehow. But let's be clear here - I didn't ever touch them with my hands. I picked them up with leaves. I mean, I do have my limits.
I'm not going to get to bike to work every day this week, but I am going to shoot for at least one. Why don't you give it a try, as well? Here are some tips for urban cycling in case you do. But please leave the dead frogs on the ground.
I might need them.