Sometimes I’m envious of my car-free friends. They don’t have the option of taking the car when they’re not feeling well, or when the weather is nasty, or just because they’re feeling lazy. If they don’t ride their bike, they’re only left with other green options such as public transit, car-pooling, or walking. Because our family is only car-lite*, we can always fall back on the car, so we have to be diligent and resist the temptation to use it when we don’t really need to.
The car was looking particularly enticing this weekend. I’ve been working lots of overtime, I was feeling exhausted, and I started coming down with something Saturday evening. You know the feeling, it starts with a little tickle in your throat that you write off to allergies. Then you notice a little stiffness in your neck that, before you realize what’s happening, explodes into a full-blown sinus headache. We had a plan to run errands on the bikes Sunday afternoon, but by Sunday morning I was tired and sick, and it was looking doubtful.
My wife, ever the optimist, suggested we wait and see how I felt in the afternoon before we made a decision. She then proceeded to load me up with Airborne and Tylenol (I was starting to get the impression that she really wanted to go for a ride). By mid-afternoon, the pharmaceuticals were working their magic and I wasn’t feeling half bad, so we ended up making that errand run on the bikes afterall. We rode a bit slower than usual, and I griped and moaned a bit more than usual, but it was still a lovely ride and the car stayed home in the garage.
I’m glad we resisted temptation and I’m happy to report that I’m no worse for the wear. The payoff is that it was a gorgeous winter evening and we experienced many sights, sounds, and smells we would have otherwise missed.