I did it. I drove a car...two actually. It started with helping my friend move, which I really don't think counts, since I was only doing it to help someone else. As for the second car, well, as my friend put it, just might cause me to lose my "street cred" with my fellow bikers. I am currently house sitting and the job came complete with a car... which considering the location of the house, is pretty essential. After the last few weeks, I had thought of plenty of things that I would do if I had a car (like not get caught in the rain with a ton of shit strapped to my bike). So the minute I had the keys in my hand, I was on a mission. I managed to go to Whole Foods, Target, COSTCO, the eye doctor, the movies, to work, and to my house. My cabinets are beyond full of food, toiletries, and work supplies.
But all of my gas guzzling, CO2 producing, errand running did not go unnoticed by the bicycle gods. I managed to get locked out of my friends house at 5:30a.m. wearing skimpy PJ's with the two dogs and no spare key. While this may not seem like an obvious sign to stop driving, I think the fact that the car I am driving stalled out today is a more clear warning to get back to the two-wheeled life. I saw this cartoon by Robert Ariail today, it pretty much sums it up...
Someone asked me this weekend if it was nice having a car again and while I enjoyed the convenience, I had to admit that I am sooooo over dealing with cars and definitely addicted to my new bicycle lifestyle. To further prove this point, I actually said no when someone I work with offered to let me use her old car for awhile (yes, my co-workers rock.) It has not been a smooth transition so far, but it also has not been rocky enough to knock me off course. Like anything new, the beginning is always a little awkward but everyone is being so supportive that it has been fun so far (or at least funny). There is such a huge community surrounding biking that it impossible not to make friends and enjoy the experience. A lot of cities have bike co-ops and ours in no different... thanks to a tip from a fellow blogger I have hooked up with: http://www.holycitybikecoop.org/
A majority of the population does not realize that owning a car is a choice... so much so that people have said to me "but you HAVE to have a car". Well damn. I must have really missed something in middle school biology. Air, Water, Food, Sunlight, Shelter, AND Automobile- obviously. For some this might be true, but it is not the case for me. I am lucky enough that I do have the choice. While I do not judge my friends who choose to own cars (especially those that are rad enough to pick me up and carpool), I am sad that their transportation will never help them make new friends, get in shape, or protect the environment. I am looking forward to returning the car tomorrow and getting back on my trusty steed...which I have named "the grasshopper".
I just want to say thank you to all of the people that have been cheering me on, giving me rides, and laughing with me through all of the craziness so far. Special thanks to Ash for the bike :-) I hope you all continue on with me... I have no doubt that it will stay interesting.