Beginning this spring I will begin a 6 month challenge of transporting myself, my 6-month-old, 2-year-old, and 5-year-old, in a Dutch-style cargo bike known as a Bakfiet. I will give up my cushy SUV for those six months and live in a way that is more simplistic and similar to the European lifestyle. I have no delusions about how difficult this will be; I will have to give up many of my creature comforts and push myself to make this experiment successful. The five minute car ride to my son’s school will probably take more like twenty minutes, so I will have to manage my time more responsibly. No more hitting the snooze button on my alarm in the morning! I will also have to say goodbye to huge packages of toilet paper and diapers that are just so easy to buy in bulk from my favorite store (i.e. Costco). If I run out of these essential items I will have to get myself up and ride to the store because there are some things that just cannot wait. I will also have to have smaller shopping lists and make more frequent visits to my local market since I will be limited on the amount of supplies that I will be able to carry home. But what worries me the most is that Fresno’s summers are sweltering HOT and easily reach triple digits for weeks at a time. I will have to press forward, enduring, without air conditioning, through it all. Am I crazy for wanting to do this? Nay… I AM DETERMINED! There has to be a better way to live than our culture’s mindset of ‘bigger is better’ , ‘more is better’ & ‘newer is better’ and I will find it!
I am very excited to begin this adventure. This will be the first time since college that I will be riding my bicycle as my main method of transportation. I am also sure that I will get A LOT of funny looks from people wherever I go, because there is not 1 cargo bike in my entire city, at least I have never seen one. Hopefully this will generate a lot of interest and provide opportunities to talk to many different people in my community about cycling as a healthy and fun way to get around town. Throughout the process, I will be documenting and chronicling my experiences in both a written blog and a video log. At the conclusion of these six months, I will edit all of my research into a 60 minute documentary. This journey will begin as soon as my sprained ankle heals and I get a bakfiet, I do not actually have one yet at this time. Thank you for reading and I hope you will continue to journey with me on my upcoming adventure!