20 November 2009

You don't have to ride your bike

rainy day in Boston with a bike
As I reflected on the view you see here, the street in front of a favorite café this morning, I found myself dreading my commute. Rain, puddles, harried drivers, it just seemed like such a drag.

Then I remembered a post from Chicago Bike Blog, Justyna's position on how we don't HAVE to ride every day and I gave myself permission to not ride into work this morning. Then the funniest thing happened! As I began contemplating my alternatives I decided to ride anyway. It really seemed the least of the evils. In the end it turns out that was for the best, the rain ended and this has become a beautiful day. I strolled outside at lunchtime without even a jacket.

I'm grateful for this morning because it allowed me to remind myself that I don't have to be a hero, and that riding almost all the time is good enough, and simply making it a choice is sufficient to bring back the joy.

So go ride your bikes! (but only if you feel like it)


Anonymous said...

Yeah, I usually find too that it's the least of all evils. I never have the car option (as my wife drives our car to work), the bus gets hot and steamy when it's raining, and takes twice as long, and walking takes about 3-4 times as long, so it's pretty much a no-brainer.

I won't say I always enjoy the rain, but that's how it is.

Nothing heroic, just a way to get from home to work and back (or wherever else).

Astroluc said...

hah! had the same dilemma but also chose to ride... not just because I knew the evening ride would be good (and dry) but because I knew that the T would have taken so much longer!

MamaVee said...


Although I did opt out this AM as my kids would have kicked my ass. But boy did I wish I had my bike when I stepped out of my class at 12!!! it was perfect.

Yay for you.

charlie said...

A picture is worth a thousand words, and this one even has a few melodies.

She Rides a Bike said...

I don't ride to work in the rain. Too much time required to re-do my hair. I don't care to be a hero or a role model. I want to enjoy my ride while also saving money but having to ride in the rain with no place a work to put myself back together would just defeat the purpose for me. On the other hand, I don't hesitate to ride home in the rain.

Anonymous said...

generally, if we wake up and asphalt is still visible through the weather, we will ride; it's not that we particularly want to be heroes but more that we just hate taking public transit. I still remember last year, after that three pack of blizzards, opting to take the T to work, and while I was waiting for 40 min(!) at the bus stop, a guy came out of a side street on a mountain bike, and I was instantly seized with regret and envy.

actually, yes, it's not that I'm trying to win the respect of my non-cycling co-workers (who have already had my case thoroughly presented to them) but avoiding the strange shame that comes when I see someone else out in the wet and the wind; feeling like I've indirectly let this stranger down.

Anonymous said...

A saying I like to keep in mind: there's no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.

Charlotte said...

Anonymous, that is true, and I've certainly sung the praises of appropriate rainwear.

Unfortunately there's not much I can wear to deal with overwhelmed drivers. A rainy ride in the countryside? That would be something else again.

knit nurse said...

Ha, I've had exactly the same dilemma before and usually come to the same conclusion. I will still get wet walking to the station, I'll have to cram onto a steamy (not in a good way!) damp train, get people's brollies and coats dripping onto me...and have to pay for the pleasure!