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Thread: Bike/foot commute

  1. #11
    Senior Member Gardenarian's Avatar
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    What I have found striking is that I feel much more relaxed on my bike than in my car. I actually feel safer.

  2. #12
    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gardenarian View Post
    What I have found striking is that I feel much more relaxed on my bike than in my car. I actually feel safer.
    Amazing! I don't feel any safer. But I still ride.
    I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

  3. #13
    Senior Member pcooley's Avatar
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    As old members of this forum may remember, we were carfree for eight years while our children were younger. We used the bicycle to get almost everywhere, and occasionally the bus, and sometimes we would take the train to Albuquerque to go to the zoo. When our oldest daughter hit middle school, we bought a car. She got into a good charter school that is a good way outside of town. Their elementary school was a short walk/scooter ride for them, and I'm glad they had the independence, as small children, of being able to leave the house and get themselves to school. My wife and I still use our bicycles for most things, and I still do most of my commuting to work by bicycle as well. Personally, I would still be happy not to own the car, but I grudgingly admit that there are some things that are easier - like backpacking trips and day hikes, with one, though the city has been running a shuttle up to the ski basin that makes even backpacking easier without a car. (And, there are now continuous trails from the city of Santa Fe to the Pecos Wilderness thanks to the recently built La Piedre Trail.)

    The worst thing that I remember from our carfree days was the time my daughter wanted to be in elementary school cheerleading. I thought it was just something she would be doing at her school, but they had to cheer at elementary school basketball games around the city. It was winter, so sometimes the roads were too icy to bicycle. We would take the city bus, but then we would have to walk to whatever school it was. I remember trudging through ankle deep snow, through the dark, to a basketball game, with my daughter swathed in a heavy coat over her cheerleading uniform. It seemed like one of those things that just plain sucked. Why would they have games after dark, in the snow, for elementary kids? We usually settle down when it starts to get dark. I didn't really feel so bad about our choice to demonstrate environmental responsibility for our kids by now owning a car, but I hated that this social thing was set up that so clearly revolved around driving to places. We could afford a car - What about the families who couldn't? How would they feel.

    Anyway, another time we had biked over for one of our daughter's circus performances with Wise Fool New Mexico. I said something to another parent about now owning a car, and she literally said, "you can't raise children in Santa Fe without owning a car." I kept repeating that we didn't own a car, and life was not only possible, but magical. She kept denying that it was even possible. That was the most bizarre conversation of our carfree period.

    Have fun with all of your bicycling and walking.

  4. #14
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UltraliteAngler View Post
    Amazing! I don't feel any safer. But I still ride.
    I used to ride my bike ALL over all five boroughs of NYC. I didn't necessarily feel safer than I would have if i'd been driving (an odd hobby that would be, driving around NYC just to see what all the neighborhoods look like...) but I didn't feel unsafe either. I had three accidents in all those years, 2 where I rear ended cars and one where I hit another bike head on which was the worst of the three. The bike/bike accident was the other guy's fault, he turned the corner coming wrong way down a one way street towards me. The ones where I hit cars were my fault but caused no damage to the cars. (I had to take my bike on the subway home both times as it was not rideable. ) I don't think the driver of the taxi I hit even knew anything had happened, although his passengers in the backseat must've heard the thump because they turned to look out the back window, with shocked looks on their faces as he drove away.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jp1 View Post
    I used to ride my bike ALL over all five boroughs of NYC. I didn't necessarily feel safer than I would have if i'd been driving (an odd hobby that would be, driving around NYC just to see what all the neighborhoods look like...) but I didn't feel unsafe either. I had three accidents in all those years, 2 where I rear ended cars and one where I hit another bike head on which was the worst of the three. The bike/bike accident was the other guy's fault, he turned the corner coming wrong way down a one way street towards me. The ones where I hit cars were my fault but caused no damage to the cars. (I had to take my bike on the subway home both times as it was not rideable. ) I don't think the driver of the taxi I hit even knew anything had happened, although his passengers in the backseat must've heard the thump because they turned to look out the back window, with shocked looks on their faces as he drove away.

    Yikes!
    I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

  6. #16
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UltraliteAngler View Post
    Yikes!
    Yeah, my life in NYC had a lot more thrills in it than my current life. Some days I really miss that.

  7. #17
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    A feeling of safety is in the mind. It is what the TSA hopes to instill on us, while failing to find a high percentage of explosives or other failings.
    That said, one may be safer from vehicles when on paths where they aren't, but other obstacles and their risks rise.

  8. #18
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToomuchStuff View Post
    That said, one may be safer from vehicles when on paths where they aren't, but other obstacles and their risks rise.
    Absolutely. In NY one of the places I rode where I felt least safe was the brooklyn bridge. Trying to dodge a couple thousand tourists walking on the path and ignoring the signs to stay on one side of the path while they attempted to take the perfect photo made the experience somewhat akin to an obstacle course. Eventually I got smart enough to not ride there on weekends when the weather was nice.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Greg44's Avatar
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    I am very lucky to live only about 3 miles from my work. I mostly ride (Feb will be 2 years) my bike - but when it is
    snowy or icy I walk. My SIL gave me some little studded straps you stretch over your shoes. So Cool! I walked yesterday when we had freezing rain and I could walk briskly without slipping. And they sound just like studded tires when on bare pavement!

  10. #20
    Senior Member pony mom's Avatar
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    I now have a 6-7 minute walk commute to work and am actually looking forward to doing it in the snow (but not ice). Can't wait to try out my several coat/boot combinations.

    Ask me how this goes in February.

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