It's so far been a total of three days that I've been back on the bicycle. Back to being carless. And you know something? I'm liking it, too.
As mentioned before, there is the huge benefit of being able to exercise while getting somewhere. Scheduling anything is an issue these days, and exercise either doesn't happen or is made possible through other more spontaneous means. If I'm lucky I'll fit in a workout twice a week. That's a far cry from the 4-5 times a week I was at before. Today I hope to fit in a recreational ride, and not merely a commute. The frame of mind is what differs one from the other, to be honest.
Now that the weather's cooler and more crisp, rides at any point of the day are going to be more enjoyable. Although I must admit I did something stupid yesterday afternoon: I left my head- and rear-lights at home. I had a feeling that by the time I headed home from school it would be dark to the point of being sketchy, if not completely dangerous. I knew, but didn't act accordingly about it. Sure, I made it home okay at about quarter-past 7:00pm without a scratch, but all it takes is one dumb mistake, one instance of oversight to ruin someone's day.
It's so funny, the idea of riding without the proper equipment and feeling absolutely naked without it. You wouldn't believe how many people I see wearing dark colors, with no lights and even barely any reflectors, weaving in and out of traffic, sometimes facing traffic. It doesn't matter if there's a bike lane, guys; if you're facing traffic you are going the wrong way. Such behavior shows that you don't care for yourself. I know that this sounds harsh but most drivers don't take bicyclists into account whether or not they can see them, and that's on a good day. At times I understand why - it takes one person doing the wrong thing to mess it up for all of us. And if one driver is thinking that, than you'd better believe that at least twenty more are, also. It's a feeling that no one is exempt from.
Simply put: bicyclists aren't second-class citizens. We're all out there putting our lives on the line - knowingly or unknowingly - in the name of fun and/or getting somewhere, both being basic, reasonable needs. Let's not make it worse for our fellow cyclists. Ignorance isn't sexy.
With all that said,
and Happy Cycling~
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