It”s good to see that Colin Beavan a.k.a. The No Impact Man tweeting about global ecological issues and more importantly pointing out the positive aspects that some countries are implementing. I plan to post about a few of Colin’s comments including an interesting one about Helsinki’s planned transport system, but for today’s post I thought I’d concentrate on one a little closer to my own home…
A little over a year ago I decided that while my family still required a car, we didn’t need to own two of them. I’ve had my own car ever since I passed my driving test, oh so many moons ago, so I’ll admit there was a fair amount of trepidation when I decided quite out of the blue that I was going to sell my car and replace it with a bicycle.
Using a bike to commute everywhere locally has it’s initial learning curve and despite being reasonably fit when I started, it was on many occasions a lot harder work than I had originally expected.
Checking the weather report became a nightly ritual, as did peeking out through the curtains each morning before work. I never really paid much attention to the weather previously, unless it was three feet of snow, as my car had heaters and air-con and I knew I would be in relative comfort within a minute of my journey. Knowing if it was raining, or cold, or hot for that matter though made a direct impact on how many layers I needed or if it was time for the waterproofs.
Over time however I stopped caring as much and adapted to the weather. The riding became much easier too. That lung busting hill was now just a hill and not only that it was one I could ride up in half the time and without breaking a sweat. My ride to work and back remains one of the highlights of my day and as a double bonus I no longer have to spend an hour in the gym after work as my riding is keeping me fit.
People often ask me if I miss having my car and I although there have been the odd occasions when it would have made my life a little easier, I can honestly say that I don’t miss it and I thoroughly love using my bike as my main method of transport.
I’m sure there are thousands of people just like me in the country, paying through the nose to keep a car that they actually don’t need. My advice to them would be to do what I did, ditch the car and embrace the bike.
Remember… “one runs on fat and saves you money, while the other runs on money and makes you fat!”
Thanks for reading.