“Why do you ride to work?” I think I can’t recall how many times I’ve been ask with this question. Well, I ride because I can and because I want to. Just kidding. Those are just quick answers that I reply because if I expound my reasons, it’s going to be a mouthful. I really use to see bike commuting a convenient way of getting to work. I see bike commuters everyday in our city. They ride their bikes to where they work carrying their bags, etc. It made me think, if these people can then I can too. There are many reasons why I choose to ride my bike to work instead of commuting (riding a car or any motorized vehicle) and aside from the reasons like saving money and staying healthy. I ride to work because:
I GET TIRED OF TRAFFIC JAMS – My work schedule is usually in the evening and it’s usually rush hour when I go to the office. Students and employees getting out of their schools and offices, making their way home or elsewhere. I remember how I hated the feeling of being stuck in a traffic jam. I live approximately 4 to 5 kilometers from my office. That’s not too far when you ride a bike. I can get there within 15 to 30 minutes depending on the pace. I can choose ride away from the main streets and take shortcuts. It’s more convenient for me. But riding a jeep in a traffic jam? 15 to 30 minutes can get to an hour or more.
JEEPS / BUSES CAN’T ALWAYS TAKE YOU WHERE YOU WANT TO GO – I know a taxi can, but it defeats the purpose of saving. That’s one of my reasons actually. Because taxi fares cost too much and riding a jeep or a bus doesn’t really take you where you want to. And especially because there are no jeeps that directly pass by my office. It takes me 3 rides in total. Well, a bicycle can. You can pedal your way to anywhere a bike can. I take my bike to mountains and peaks. Surely I can make my way around town.
IT DOESN’T MAKE THE EARTH SICK – We all heard about the so called Global Warming and it’s causes. How “sucky” it is that the temperature has become hotter than it used to. I ride my bike to work because it’s one thing to contribute to make the world less polluted. I ride because it doesn’t emit fumes or carbon dioxide. Because it’s the only planet we live in as of now and because at some point I really have to do my part. Riding my bike removes me from the equation of traffic jams. I give a seat space for other people who can’t ride their bikes to work.
RIDING HAS BECOME A LIFESTYLE – If I’m not on my mountain bike I’m on my folding bike. I ride to work whenever I can. I think heavy rain is the only thing that stops me from riding. That’s mainly because I have my laptop with me when I go to the office. Can’t risk it getting wet. (Haha). Riding has become more than just a hobby, more than just a physical activity, more than just a means of transportation. The biking community in Davao is growing. I see more and more riders especially those weekend riders who ride trails. However those riders who bike to work or commute with their bikes are still few. I know as of know the streets are still not very “biker” friendly. We do not have bike lanes yet. Other drivers do have much respect for bikers on the road. Only a number of establishments have bike racks, which in my opinion, makes riding a bit of a hassle when I need to get to a place and I can’t find a decent spot to park my bike. It’s part of the reason why I have my folding bike. I’ll be honest, I do care about my bikes.
I do hope one day I see more bikers who commute with their bikes. Until then I’ll be on the road making my presence seen. Encourage other riders to the same by example. And voila! Maybe in future more and more people will do their part in making a better world.
“Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.” —H. G. Wells