the sunset caused an orangish glow to be reflected on the fallen leaves as i walked the mile or so to the library. it was surreal, like the scenes of Vanilla Sky, and had a bit of a melancholy effect. coupled with the Ray LaMontagne i had playing on my iPod, it was like i was in a scene in a movie, watching all the players moving by, my neighbors in the midst of their lives. smiling and laughing. holding babies. strapping on roller blades. smoking cigarettes during front-porch conversation.
no-car Wednesdays began happening unintentionally. i simply desired, when Training School started, to incorporate more exercise into my daily routine. so i would bike to class (Wednesdays just seemed to be the easiest, since i don’t go to work after class). then i would walk to the library or the local coffee shop. and before i knew it, i hadn’t driven my car all day.
so, the aim was more exercise. but there were also a lot of unintended outcomes. like the opportunity for community, as a friend would occasionally join me on the ride to class, and we would have great conversation. or the opportunity to experience my neighborhood in a slower, more intentional way. to say hello to my neighbors, to see life from their perspective.
no-car Wednesdays offers the incredible gift of reminding me of my humanity. of my relationship to the earth, to the people around me. i am vulnerable biking to class, and i am often exhausted. it gives me a glimpse into the lives of those who rely on public transportation, their bikes or their own feet. instead of taking it for granted, i learn to appreciate the seemingly simple option to just drive somewhere.