On Saturday morning, I had a few errands to run (actually, I’d had a couple of weeks to do them, but kind of forgot). I had to drop some things off for my church at four different houses in the neighbourhood. Afterwards, I wanted to pop by Winners for a few things.
So a little before 11:00, I hopped on my bike and went about my duties. Along the way, two thoughts occurred to me.
First, bicycling was absolutely, 100% the most efficient way to take care of these tasks. I wasn’t going really far, but multiple stops and maybe some chatting with people meant that walking was out of the question. I would have taken well over an hour (just the popping by the four houses took about 40 minutes by bike). Driving would have been crazy for someone without a mobility issue, like me. There’s just no need for that much driving within a neighbourhood. And since I was only going down residential streets, basically, busing made no sense–it’d make no sense to have buses running down those streets, to begin with.
So, yeah, it’s clear that for certain types of trips, the bike is the most efficient (and easiest) method of transportation. In fact, this is the case for a majority of trips within the city. So, if we’re going to get political, the city needs to facilitate and prioritize bicycling far more than they do.
But, really, my thought process wasn’t all bike-activist that morning.
My other thought was just how nice, how fun it was. Now, I bike a lot, so you might think, of course you thought it was fun. But most of my bicycling isn’t really about fun. When I’m going to work, that’s not fun, especially when you factor in all the hills. When I’m taking my kids to different events, that’s not always fun–again hills, and the added weight and maybe the added stress of getting there on time.
But Saturday morning, there was none of that. I had ample time. The streets I was on were pretty much flat. They were mostly quiet residential streets (yes, I sidewalked it on Bronson a few lot-lenghts). It was just simple and easy. There was little exertion, and everything about it was convenient.
It was really just a lovely way to spend the morning and be productive.
Again, there are a whole bunch of political lessons we could glean from such an experience, but I don’t really want to focus on that right now. It was just a nice morning…the sort of morning we should all be able to have in our city.