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Introduction

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  • Pedalers Express
    Hello. I m one of the new list subscribers. I can probably account for some of the other new subscribers as well. I received an announcement about this list on
    Message 1 of 20 , Feb 11, 2000
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      Hello. I'm one of the new list subscribers. I can probably account for
      some of the other new subscribers as well. I received an announcement
      about this list on a workbike list I am on (thanks, Jim) and I forwarded
      the announcement to several local lists here in North Carolina including
      a Critical Mass list, a Reclaim the Streets list, and a list for a new
      organization called Transportation Reform is Possible (TRIP)
      http://triangletrip.org

      Glad to be here.

      My wife Rachel and I have been "car-lite" for three years, depending
      mostly on bikes, including the Long Haul cargo bikes I use for my
      business, Pedalers Express (www.pedexnc.citysearch.com). We also have a
      large bike trailer built by Bikes at Work. We have car-shared, carpooled
      car-rented, taken taxis, walked, bussed, and flown in this time as well.
      We have considered going totally car-free, but aren't there yet.

      Seth


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    • Mike Weber
      Hello to everyone on CarFree. I admire and respect every one of you who is trying to free your life of automobiles - you are doing the single most important
      Message 2 of 20 , Jul 30, 2001
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        Hello to everyone on CarFree. I admire and respect
        every one of you who is trying to free your life of
        automobiles - you are doing the single most important
        thing any of us can do to make this a better world for
        everyone, and you're doing it in the midst of a
        culture that is built around and worships personal
        automobility.

        My name is Mike Weber; I live in Lexington, KY; I am a
        hunter-gatherer born into the wrong time and place, so
        I don't have a career or occupation as such. I've been
        carfree since 1979, when my old VeeDub gave up the
        ghost and I couldn't afford to replace it. I did buy
        and use another car from mid 1986 to late 1989, but
        I've done without again since that time.

        I can't say I was committed to carfree during those
        first 7 years (which was why I ended up with another
        car). At first I hated it: Buses in Lexington at that
        time were abominable (they've since improved to
        marginal); places I used to drive to in 5 to 15
        minutes were taking 30 minutes to over an hour to walk
        to; no more 6-sack trips to the grocery; I was subject
        to the weather - all the usual stuff. Since being able
        to afford a car was out of the question for a while, I
        arranged my life to compensate for not having one. But
        soon enough I began to appreciate: All the extra money
        I had by not having to support a car; being out in the
        real world, not surrounded by a steel and glass cage;
        knowing that as long as my legs still work I won't
        ever again get stranded anywhere; and the discovery of
        a delicious settling of my mind and clarification of
        my thoughts than come from walking.

        In '86 I convinced myself I needed a car for what I
        thought was a "good" job. By '89, though, the job
        turned out to be not so good, the car was dying, and I
        was beginning to move in the direction of simpler
        living - prompted in no small measure by my experience
        of being carfree.

        For sure, when you go carfree, you make a lot of
        sacrifices, at least in terms of the dominant
        lifestyle in what is coming to be the world-dominant
        culture. Anybody who's tried for any serious length of
        time knows all about it. As the years of doing without
        start adding up, you begin to notice how your whole
        frame of reference and way of thinking changes, and
        you also notice how that estranges or alienates you
        from the great mass of people who still drive, whether
        they try to justify it or not. But being carfree has
        it compensations - whether they balance the
        sacrifices, I guess, depends on what each person
        values most in their life. For me, it's worth it. You
        have to make that judgement for yourself.

        Personal automobility is fouling the air, water, and
        soil; destroying habitat; irreversibly using up
        irreplaceable resources; and destroying social
        cohesion, psychic and physical health. It's not
        inevitable that we continue down this path. But we
        can't wait for someone else to do something - each one
        of us has to make the necessary changes in our own
        lives, to assume responsibility, because no one else
        is going to.

        Hang tough, and good luck to you all.


        =====
        You ask why I don't live here -
        Honey, how come you don't move?

        Mike Weber
        kyhardhead@...

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      • Will Stewart
        1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one. I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently 2. How long have you been either
        Message 3 of 20 , Oct 26, 2001
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          1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one.

          I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently

          2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive transport
          as your principle means of transportation?

          Months, though I sometimes still carpool

          3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end hyour reliance on the
          automobile?

          Energy resources, pollution, green house gases, sprawl

          4. If you owned a car and then gave it up, what process did you go through
          to do so? (e.g., did you go through a process of gradually using the car
          less and less, or did you give up using it all at once -- going cold
          turkey?)

          N/A

          5. What tools or factors have helped you the most in being able to get
          around without a car? (e.g., living close to transit, living close
          to work, owning a folding bike, joining a car-sharing club or
          co-op, etc.)

          Bike, Bus, Metro

          6. What, if any, factors have made it difficult?

          Living in a semi-rural area

          7. What effect has the way you travel had on the people around you,
          including children, family, and/or friends? Have any of them changed
          their travel behavior or relationship with cars as a result of what
          you're doing?

          Yes, we don't just go places because we can.

          8. What are the advantages of being car-free and/or getting around without
          using a car?

          Better health, lower energy use.

          9. What are the disadvantages?

          Unable to go anywhere, anytime.

          10. Would you recommend car-free or "car-reduced" living to your friends?

          Yes

          11. What differences does travelling without using a car make for you in
          terms of time?

          Not much

          12. What differences does travelling without using a car make for you in
          terms of money?

          Less cost

          14. What role should automotive transport play in an overall healthy and
          sustainable system of transportation?

          One can't really supply a good answer to this without also examining land use planning
          and implementation. Buses/trains don't make sense in semi rural areas, and even in
          some poorly laid out subdivisions.

          Will Stewart
        • criticalmass74135
          Dear Car-Freers: By way of introduction, I am the first candidate for Tulsa Mayor to use the bicycle as a campaign tactic and as a platform. Using a bicycle,
          Message 4 of 20 , Mar 31, 2002
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            Dear Car-Freers:
            By way of introduction, I am the first candidate for Tulsa Mayor to
            use the bicycle as a campaign tactic and as a platform.

            Using a bicycle, towing a box attached onto a Winchester steel-framed
            trailer, I ripped off thousands of dollars worth of advertising from
            the Tulsa radio stations. Tulsa is in the top 50 largest cities in
            America. Not a small media market.

            There is an unwritten rule of the road: Bicycle drivers shall not
            inconvenience car drivers. I violated that rule big time.

            When the car drivers called the radio stations, and the radio
            stations had no choice but to talk about it, KaaaaaaaaaaaaChing.

            For a whole month, most of Tulsa's radio station were either talking
            about me or the bike campaign. Most of it was negative, as
            expected. But, 857 Tulsans made history and voted for the message on
            March 12.

            The whole story is on www.paultayformayor.com.

            Everything, including, the bike campaign, picture of BATmobile,
            picture of BATmobile after a direct, rear-end hit by a 66 Chevy
            Caprice at 50 kph, and jail time for waving the American flag
            soliciting votes on a major highway. They are all on there,
            somewhere.

            My eyes are bugged out this weekend from preparing a legal brief to
            fight an unjust traffic ticket. All court proceedings will be posted
            as they become available.

            As I post more stuff, you might find me to be strident, maybe even
            militant. However, I am not a radical. I am not even ANTI-car...yet.

            I seem strident because most of my work on behalf of bicycle drivers
            is in the American jurisprudence system.

            That system is based on adversary. Like tennis. Two players. One
            wins, one loses. He who twists the legalese most effectively to his
            advantage...wins.

            But, to have a chance in court, we have to engage the opponent.
            Attract enemy fire, determine their positions, and use the
            intelligence to attack weaknesses. Simple concepts from Son Tzu's
            Art of War and Dien Bien Phu.

            Keep checking the website for the news flash scrolling over the top
            of the home page.

            At peace,
            Paul Tay
            www.votetay.com
          • John Snyder
            Hi Riin, Welcome to this gathering! You might enjoy taking a long gaze at some the large loads, like full-sized refrigerators, that the latest and greatest
            Message 5 of 20 , May 17, 2002
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              Hi Riin,

              Welcome to this gathering!

              You might enjoy taking a long gaze at some the
              large loads, like full-sized refrigerators, that
              the latest and greatest bicycle trailers can handle.

              http://www.bikesatwork.com/


              Cheers,

              John Snyder
            • Tom Frost Jr
              ... Some decades I m more car-free than others. ... a) Sometimes economics (although other times, including when doing most of my farm work, that works the
              Message 6 of 20 , Mar 9, 2003
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                --- CarFree Moderator <CarFree-owner@yahoogroups.com>
                wrote:
                >
                > Introductory Profile
                >
                > 1. Which of the following best describes you? Please
                > check one.
                > _____ I am do not presently own a car though I have
                > owned a car
                > previously.
                > _____ I am car-free and have never owned a car
                > __X___ I own a car but use other forms of transport
                > frequently
                >
                > 2. How long have you been either car-free or used
                > non-automotive transport as your principle
                > means of transportation?


                Some decades I'm more car-free than others.


                > 3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end
                > hyour reliance on the
                > automobile?


                a) Sometimes economics (although other times,
                including when doing most of my farm work, that works
                the other way around because of the competition).

                b) It's always better to use a human-scale amount of
                resources, where practicable.

                c) I get less road rage from behind me when I'm
                cycling than when I'm motoring on the same type of
                road. Anybody who thinks it's the other way around,
                probably speeds when they're motoring.

                d) I predicted 25 years ago that there'd be a war for
                oil, and I don't want to be one of the reasons.
                (That's why I joined this list _without_hesitation_
                when I recently discovered it.)


                > 4. If you owned a car and then gave it up, what
                > process did you go through to do so? (e.g., did you
                > go through a process of gradually using the car less
                > and less, or did you give up using it all at once --
                > going cold turkey?)


                I'm guilty of only giving it up cold turkey on the
                occasions when I'm forced to, such as when all of my
                several motor vehicles are out of commission - a
                situation that might occasionally continue for months
                at a time, due to the fact that, at least when other
                people aren't controlling me, I treat having a car as
                a low priority.


                > 5. What tools or factors have helped you the most in
                > being able to get around without a car? (e.g.,
                > living close to transit, living close to work,
                > owning a folding bike, joining a car-sharing club or
                > co-op, etc.)


                a) The vehicular cycling principle.

                b) The existence of Amtrak even though the nearest
                Amtrak station is over 100 miles away from where I
                live here in N.E. Pa. (although I lived near
                Philadelphia until 1982).

                Although bus and plane travel might be cheaper than
                train travel, I use them as little as possible,
                because so-called "professional" bus drivers regularly
                use terroristic threats to get more-law-abiding
                drivers out of their way (which I don't want any part
                in; I'll usually even drive my car before I take a
                bus, for that reason), and planes are less
                fuel-efficient than trains.


                > 6. What, if any, factors have made it difficult?


                Having been a farmer since 1983, a lot of my
                transportation miles require carrying heavy loads.


                > 7. What effect has the way you travel had on the
                > people around you,
                > including children, family, and/or friends? Have any
                > of them changed
                > their travel behavior or relationship with cars as a
                > result of what
                > you're doing?


                Apparently not in my family. But in the 1980s, a kid
                next door was always coming to me, and I taught him
                about vehicular cycling. He stopped by a year or so
                ago with the tractor-trailer that he now drives, and
                based on what he described, he interacts very properly
                with cyclists as a result of what I taught him.

                The days when a vehicular cyclist (outside of an
                organized program) could have such a positive effect
                on a kid, seem to be over. Starting with about the
                born-after-1982 crowd, the proliferation of parents'
                practice of buying their kid an ATV as a baby-sitter,
                got out of control, and now it seems that the kids
                just want to borrow your spare bike so that they can
                try and fail to put an engine on it and then never
                bring it back.


                > 8. What are the advantages of being car-free and/or
                > getting around without using a car?
                >
                > 9. What are the disadvantages?
                >
                > 10. Would you recommend car-free or "car-reduced"
                > living to your friends? Why or why not?


                (8) (9) and (10), answered in other various places
                above.


                > 11. What differences does travelling without using a
                > car make for you in terms of time?


                a. The simple-mph time-saving boast of motoring,
                overlooks all of the extra hours of working to afford
                a car. Plus, every time I use my car to save time for
                addressing whatever my current crisis is, I do so with
                the knowledge that I'll lose at least that much time
                by croaking of old age earlier from lack of exercise.

                b. I saved time and money in an even-more-obvious way
                when, in 1978, I built a cottage on an island, at a
                location that was a mile down the beach from where I
                could land the boat. I used a "rickshaw" - sometimes
                pushed by hand and other times towed behind my bike -
                to move all of the building materials and
                homemade-pile-driver parts, in 250 lb. loads, over the
                hard sand at low tide (and over a "railroad"
                consisting of boards layed out, over the 100' or so of
                soft sand on each end of the trip).

                Everybody else building on that island, payed through
                the nose by having an old pickup that they could
                afford to sacrifice to a hurricane, barged out there.
                Stupid!


                > 12. What differences does travelling without using a
                > car make for you in terms of money?


                See answer (3) (a).


                > 13. If you still use a car please share the general
                > situation affecting your use such as finances
                > (share, rent, etc) how often, and the reasons?


                Own, several, but only two operational at any given
                time: A compact car and a 16' stake-body truck. About
                2000 miles per year each. Cycling miles per year:
                About 2000 also (was 5000 during most of the 1980s).


                > 14. What role should automotive transport play in an
                > overall healthy and sustainable system of
                > transportation?


                A LEGAL role - the way trains, planes and vehicular
                cyclists do it. No need to change any laws. Simply
                bothering to enforce speed and following distance
                laws, would work wonders in leveling the playing field
                among the various competing transportation modes.


                > 15. Please share any other thoughts or experiences
                > you've had as a result of being car- free and/or
                > using non-automotive transport.


                Several times in my life, I've found myself being
                labeled "anti-car" for saying things like my answer #
                14. "Anti-car" is a very inaccurate label, of course,
                but it is an important one of the reasons I believe in
                separating reduced-car-use advocacy from cycling
                advocacy.


                - Tom Frost Jr. (who, on the Chainguard and BTI lists,
                remains CLOSET reduced-car-use advocate for the above
                reason).

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              • douglasmckown
                Hi, my name is Doug McKown. I live in State College, PA. Not yet car- free but close to it. ... I live in a rural area because it s cheap, but with the cost of
                Message 7 of 20 , Aug 8, 2003
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                  Hi, my name is Doug McKown. I live in State College, PA. Not yet car-
                  free but close to it.


                  > Introductory Profile
                  >
                  > 1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one.
                  > _____ I am do not presently own a car though I have owned a car
                  > previously.
                  > _____ I am car-free and have never owned a car
                  > _____ I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently

                  I live in a rural area because it's cheap, but with
                  the cost of my car
                  payments...not too cheap. I'm looking for a place
                  near my office, so
                  that I can go entirely car-free


                  > 2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive
                  transport as your principle means of
                  transportation?

                  N/A

                  > 3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end hyour reliance on
                  > the automobile?

                  Enmvornmentla issues, cost, and I like to walk

                  > 4. If you owned a car and then gave it up, what process did you go
                  > through
                  to do so? (e.g., did you go through a process of
                  gradually using the
                  car less and less, or did you give up using it all at
                  once -- going
                  cold turkey?)

                  Cold turkey

                  > 5. What tools or factors have helped you the most in being able to
                  > get
                  around without a car? (e.g., living close to transit,
                  living close to
                  work, owning a folding bike, joining a car-sharing
                  club or > co-op,
                  etc.)

                  Plan to move close to my office.

                  > 6. What, if any, factors have made it difficult?

                  Rents are higher in the city

                  > 7. What effect has the way you travel had on the people around you,
                  > including children, family, and/or friends? Have any of them changed
                  > their travel behavior or relationship with cars as a result of what
                  > you're doing?
                  >
                  > 8. What are the advantages of being car-free and/or getting around
                  > without
                  using a car?

                  Excercise, civilized pace of life, and saving money

                  > 9. What are the disadvantages?

                  Out-of-town travel

                  > 10. Would you recommend car-free or "car-reduced" living to your
                  > friends?
                  Why or why not?

                  Absolutely. Most, though are die-hard
                  suburbanites, who haven't walked
                  anywhere since childhood.

                  > 11. What differences does travelling without using a car make for
                  > you in
                  terms of time?

                  Grocery sopping will be more time consuming, but
                  being in town will
                  make most other things more convenient.

                  > 12. What differences does travelling without using a car make for
                  > you in
                  terms of money?

                  No car payment!!!

                  > 13. If you still use a car please share the general situation
                  > affecting
                  your use such as finances (share, rent, etc) how
                  often, and the
                  reasons? > > 14. What role should automotive
                  transport play in an
                  overall healthy and sustainable system of
                  transportation?

                  VERY little. We need to take the
                  European/Canadian approach to
                  suctainable cities and mass transit.

                  > 15. Please share any other thoughts or experiences you've had as a
                  > result
                  of being car- free and/or using non-automotive
                  transport.
                • Arlaina Ash
                  Introductory Profile 1. Which of the following best describes you? I do not presently own a car though I have owned a car previously. 2. How long have you
                  Message 8 of 20 , Apr 16 12:45 PM
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                    Introductory Profile 1. Which of the following best describes you? I do not presently own a car though I have owned a car previously. 2. How long have you been either car-free or usednon-automotive transport as your principle means of transportation?3 years 3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end your reliance on the automobile? A number of things. First of all environmental considerations. Also the wars in the middle east areabout oil. I had a car in high school, then not fromgraduation (1997) until summer of 99 when I got aninternship that required me to have a car. Then I didwithout a car until fall of 2001, when I had to getone for a job. After 9 months it broke down becauseit had an oil leak I didn't take care of. That prompted me to renew my carfree commitment that Imade in 1999. Now I can't afford a car even if I didwant one. Luckily, I don't need one because I havedisability/SSI and am a full-time student. I livenear the university and shop for groceries,
                    attendclass, and go to some clubs/coffee shops. Once I getmy degree (technical writing) I will either have to get a car or move to a city that has reliable publictransportation. Because in Albuquerque, NM it takes an hour to get across town by bus.4. If you owned a car and then gave it up, whatprocess did you go through to do so? (e.g., did yougo through a process of gradually using the car lessand less, or did you give up using it all at once --going cold turkey?) See above. I went cold turkey because my engine wasruined. It died cold and it would cost as much toreplace the engine as to replace the car and I wasbroke. 5. What tools or factors have helped you the most in being able to get around without a car? (e.g. living close to transit, living close to work, owning a folding bike, joining a car-sharing club or co-op, etc.)Living near the university area where there are 2 grocery stores to walk to, coffee shops, etc.Also, a foldable cart I use for groceries and laundry. 6.
                    What, if any, factors have made it difficult? Horrible bus service: when I ride the bus I see theugly parts of my city. I can never get away to themountains. As I said before, it takes an hour or moreto get across town. Not being able to go places orbeing dependent on others for a ride. 7. What effect has the way you travel had on the people around you, including children, family, and/or friends? Have any of them changed their travel behavior or relationship with cars as a result of what you're doing? I don't think so. I have friends who are car-free aswell, and the others I depend on for rides. ;-) 8. What are the advantages of being car-free and/orgetting around without using a car? The biggest one is that when I'm walking I don't haveto stop and wait for a red light if there's notraffic. me: 1, cars: 0 Also, exercise, no gas or insurance bill, the feelingof being revolutionary. 9. What are the disadvantages? Takes a long time to get where I need to go, and someplaces I can't
                    go, can't leave town. It's hard toschedule things, like when I had to take my cat to thevet, because I have to take someone else's scheduleinto account. A BIG one is emergency transportation. If I think Ineed to go to the hospital in the middle of the nightI have to call an ambulance. This happened lastDecember when I had a ruptured appendix. Because Iwas misdiagnosed and sent home the first time,Medicare turned it down. Their reason "you could havebeen taken by car" and they couldn't take into accountthat I don't HAVE a car. 10. Would you recommend car-free or "car-reduced"living to your friends? Why or why not? Yes, because of the environmental and political reasons. 11. What differences does travelling without using acar make for you in terms of time? It takes about 4 times as long to get where I need togo. If the trip takes 15 minutes by car, it mighttake me an hour or more by bus and foot. 12. What differences does travelling without using acar make for you in terms of
                    money? I save money by not having to buy gas or car insurance.14. What role should automotive transport play in anoverall healthy and sustainable system of transportation? Much less than it does now. 15. Please share any other thoughts or experiencesyou've had as a result of being car- free and/orusing non-automotive transport.I think it's made me more patient, and moredeliberate. I notice a marked difference between meand my car-driving friends, because I have to plan atrip far in advance and they can be more spontaneous. And when I do/did drive I have much less road ragebecause what's waiting an extra 30 seconds at a lightcompared to waiting 30 minutes for a bus?Also, I notice things that I wouldn't notice if I weredriving. Like the plants people grow in their yards.One thing I would like to change is the way people without cars are treated as second-class citizens. In Albuquerque, at least, only the very poor or those with disabilities ride the bus with any frequency. I guess
                    I fit into both of those categories...



                    ---------------------------------
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                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Paul Cooley
                    Arlaina -- Does your disability prevent you from riding a bicycle? Albuquerque is a great place to bicycle with good support from the city. It even has a
                    Message 9 of 20 , Apr 18 10:44 AM
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                      Arlaina --

                      Does your disability prevent you from riding a bicycle? Albuquerque is
                      a great place to bicycle with good support from the city. It even has
                      a dedicated street sweeper for the bike lanes, waiting on-call for
                      complaints. The New Mexico Touring Society is pretty much based there,
                      and the Albuquerque Spokespeople is an important advocacy group there.
                      I know there are maps of bikeways available from the city. If you can
                      bike, and you can't find a map, try contacting Chuck Maligodi at city
                      Parks and Recreation. I'm sure he would have maps and plenty of
                      advice.

                      You might also want to check out www.bikenm.org for specific
                      information about Albuquerque.

                      A friend of mine who moved up here to Santa Fe from Albuquerque
                      observed that liberal Santa Fe is more in love with its cars than
                      conservative Albuquerque.

                      Paul Cooley


                      On Apr 16, 2004, at 1:45 PM, Arlaina Ash wrote:
                      > Once I getmy degree (technical writing) I will either have to get a
                      > car or move to a city that has reliable publictransportation. Because
                      > in Albuquerque, NM it takes an hour to get across town by bus.
                    • Jim Otterstrom
                      Hi- My wife Peggy and I have been car-free since 1997 and I ve just found this forum. It s always nice to share experiences with those of similar persuasions.
                      Message 10 of 20 , Mar 2, 2005
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                        Hi-

                        My wife Peggy and I have been car-free since 1997 and I've just
                        found this forum.

                        It's always nice to share experiences with those of similar
                        persuasions.

                        To know something more about us visit our blog at

                        http://earthhomegarden.blogspot.com/

                        There are photos there, descriptions of our lifestyle, and a post
                        on how we became car-free.

                        I hope to share in much good conversation here at this forum.

                        Jim
                      • Jerry T
                        Howdy, all: As directed by the moderator, here s a bit about me: *1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one. *__ I do not presently own a
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jan 15, 2007
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                          Howdy, all:

                          As directed by the moderator, here's a bit about me:


                          *1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one.
                          *__ I do not presently own a car though I have owned a car previously.
                          __ I am car-free and have never owned a car
                          X I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently

                          For now, I have to place myself in this category. I am beginning to bike
                          commute again and, as a result, generally drive less than two days a week to
                          work.

                          *2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive transport
                          as your principle means of transportation? *

                          I have bike commuting or riding the bus off and on for the last 3 or 4
                          years. The bus isn't a great option in Bakersfield, as the routes and
                          schedules are limited.

                          *3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end your reliance on the
                          automobile? *
                          Wow, there are a number of factors. Although I am very conservative from a
                          political standpoint, I do think that we're too reliant on imported oil.
                          While I would like to see us explore (in an environmentally sensitive way)
                          our country's oil reserves, I respect the fact that this is a democracy,
                          which means that we're not going to do so for the foreseeable future.
                          Riding my bike helps reduce this need.

                          Equally as important - I think that we have an obligation to take care of
                          the environment. Granted, I'm not sold on the "global warming" theories,
                          and hope you will respectfully accept my opinion. However, I have seen
                          Bakersfield's air quality grow worse over the years. My understanding is
                          that part of this is because we get pollution blown down from cities up
                          north (ie San Francisco), but a good part is produced by vehicle emissions
                          here in the San Joaquin Valley. Currently, Bakersfield has the worst air
                          quality in the nation, so by riding my bike I cut down on the amount of
                          pollution.

                          It's good for me! Riding my bike regularly can help keep my weight under
                          control while improving my health.

                          It's fun - the commute time gives me a time to relax, reflect on my day,
                          etc. Plus, it's fun to pass long lines of cars stopped at a traffic light -
                          while they're waiting 40 or 50 deep at an intersection, I'm able to pull up
                          to the front of the queue. :)

                          Lastly - it makes financial sense. The less I drive, the less I'm buying
                          gas @ $2.40 a gallon. This means more money to pay down debt, give to
                          charity, and provide a better standard of living for my family.

                          4. What factors have either impeded or inspired your decision to reduce your
                          reliance on automotive transport?
                          I think the above about sums it up. I've taken some ribbing from some of my
                          friends (whom are both conservative and liberal), and there are still plenty
                          of drivers who don't understand that cyclists have the same rights and
                          responsibilities as motor vehicle operators. But, as this new wave of
                          cycling takes hold in Bakersfield, I am hopeful that they will be come
                          better educated.

                          Bakersfield still is not a very cyclist friendly place. We have a long way
                          to go, but thankfully our local bicycle advocacy group, Bike
                          Bakersfield<http://www.bikebakersfield.org>,
                          is working to improve things.

                          5. Has your transportational choices had any discernible effect on your
                          family and friends?
                          No, not really.

                          6. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being car-free and/or
                          getting around without using a car?
                          While cycling increases the amount of time it takes to get to work and back,
                          it's a good way to incorporate exercise into my schedule.
                          When I arrive at work, I am wide awake and ready to go. I grab a quick
                          shower, change, and get to work. No caffeine required!
                          Chain lube, tubes, and other "maintenance" items on a bicycle are a lot less
                          expensive than a motor vehicle.

                          7. Do you typically feel comfortable recommending car-free living to your
                          friends and/or relatives? Why or why not?
                          I don't see it that way. While I'd like to see them bicycle more for all of
                          the benefits it provides, it's really up to them to choose. (I choose to
                          lead by example, rather than preach / lecture them on the benefits. If they
                          ask I'll tell them how my commuting experience is going (which is generally
                          pretty great!).

                          8. Have you experienced any adverse consequences of reducing or eliminating
                          your automotive dependency with regard to time and finances?
                          None that I can think of.

                          9. Have there been any benefits?
                          I'm saving at least $20 / week in gas so far, more as I commute on a more
                          regular basis.

                          10. In an ideal world, what role should the car play in the general
                          transportation system?

                          Not quite sure. I wish that cities such as Bakersfield would invest more in
                          public transportation infrastructure so that we could conveniently take
                          trips without having to get the car out. Likewise, I wish that they would
                          invest more on roadway improvements that would make bicycling a safer
                          experience. That would make bike use more practical for many families.

                          11. Do you have any other personal or general thoughts you've care to share
                          on this topic?
                          I think I've about covered it, being one of the few conservative cycling
                          advocates. :)

                          12. Where do you live (city, state, country)?
                          Bakersfield, CA, United States of America

                          I look forward to learning from this group - thank you for the opportunity
                          to participate.

                          Jerry


                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • Joseph Knasinski
                          Hi, I m new to the list and wanted to post my intro. I currently have a car, but bike and use public transit frequently for various reasons. My car is 2.5
                          Message 12 of 20 , Nov 17, 2007
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                            Hi,
                            I'm new to the list and wanted to post my intro.

                            I currently have a car, but bike and use public transit frequently
                            for various reasons. My car is 2.5 years old but I only have 8700
                            miles on it and am considering going car-free.

                            I've used other forms such as my bike and buses for a couple of years
                            now. Twenty years ago I was carfree for about 3 years. I lived in
                            Albuquerque then; I live in Milwaukee Wi now.

                            Mostly I will use my bike to get to work, run errands, or for just
                            exercise or fun. I use public transit if parking is difficult or
                            expensive.

                            Factors I'm considering that could prevent me from going completely
                            carfree, are that my job is not exactly stable, with layoffs on a
                            regular basis, and other jobs in the area are typically in the
                            suburbs and public transit doesn't go there. While I'm able to easily
                            get to work now (3 miles away) and live downtown Milwaukee, if I had
                            to get a new job, transportation could be an issue. I'm also
                            concerned about things like getting my pets to the vet or myself to
                            the doctor as needed. I know I can use a taxi but I still think about
                            these things. I'm also older (55) and I don't bike as far or as
                            easily as I used to! Public transit is usually good but sometimes
                            overcrowded etc.

                            My transportation choices have not impacted anyone else.

                            Advantages of using my car less are the obvious of cost savings as
                            well as environmental and health if I bike etc. Disadvantages are
                            time and convenience.

                            I really don't recommend any lifestyle changes to anyone else; that's
                            their choice. I'll discuss it with them if it comes up, but I don't
                            press issues.

                            Adverse consequences have only been time and convenience but I still
                            have the car and use it when I need to or feel like it. I'm not sure
                            how much the time and convenience would bother me if I didn't have
                            the car. That is an issue I'm thinking about now.

                            Benefits have been lower cost and I know I can save a lot more by
                            selling the car. I am also concerned about environmental impact and
                            the "social/mental" impact of always driving.

                            Ideal world? No clue what that is. I think cars will always be
                            around, hopefully more efficient and less polluting etc.

                            I live in Milwaukee Wi. I'm 55 and a technical writer by profession.

                            My reason for joining this list is to learn more about going carfree.
                            Since I own a car now but frequently use alternate means, I know I
                            could go carfree but I'm considering the pros and cons. Getting rid
                            of the car will save me a lot of money but I am concerned about the
                            job situation like I said etc.
                            I hope this list will help me get various opinions and ideas.

                            Thanks everyone,
                            Joseph K.

                            "...time is limited, so I better wake up every morning fresh and know
                            that I have just one chance to live this particular day right, and to
                            string my days together into a life of action, and purpose." ~ Lance
                            Armstrong






                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          • AnnaLisa Wiley
                            Welcome Joseph. I also am 55 with an uncertain job future. If I had a car, I would not sell it. I would however, non-op it. In California (where I live)
                            Message 13 of 20 , Nov 19, 2007
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                              Welcome Joseph.

                              I also am 55 with an uncertain job future. If I had a car, I would not sell
                              it. I would however, "non-op" it. In California (where I live) the
                              Department of Motor Vehicles will give you a permit to keep a
                              "non-operational vehicle" parked on private property without insurance or
                              registration. If you later wish to use or sell the car, it can be
                              re-registered and insured without penalty. I know WI is different (I lived
                              there for a year and a half) but perhaps they have something similar that
                              would allow you to keep the car without it costing anything and eliminate
                              the temptation to use it.



                              The other thing to consider is our age. There are plenty of car-free old
                              people (a lot older than us!) Personally, I am comforted (and often
                              irritated) by the number of friends and family who offer rides regularly. I
                              rarely accept, but I know that if my health fails, I can count on them until
                              I can make other arrangements. Fortunately, in Santa Rosa, you can take a
                              bike on both city and county busses, making the great majority of businesses
                              accessible to car-free workers. Unfortunately, the busses only run during
                              business hours, less on weekends and not on holidays. In a perfect world,
                              public transportation would be available 24/7 wherever people lived and cars
                              would be completely unnecessary. In the real world, those of us who live in
                              places like Milwaukee, WI or Santa Rosa, CA need to be practical as well as
                              environmentally responsible.



                              So, again, Welcome.



                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • Justice McPherson
                              1. Which of the following best describes you? I USE a car but use other forms of transport frequently. I don t actually own the car, though; I share it with
                              Message 14 of 20 , Dec 4, 2007
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                                1. Which of the following best describes you?

                                I USE a car but use other forms of transport frequently. I don't
                                actually own the car, though; I share it with someone else who uses
                                it sometimes.

                                2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive
                                transportas your principle means of transportation?

                                A couple months, where I am now - and all the time I was in college,
                                preceeding it, though I gained weight then due to inactivity in spite
                                of walking everywhere - everything was right there..

                                3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end hyour reliance on the
                                automobile?

                                I know soldiers, and I have a cousin who killed someone with his car,
                                and others who have been killed. I just couldn't support that
                                anymore. I also have studied the factors involved in oil supply and I
                                don't feel like suddenly panicking in a couple years when fuel supply
                                starts getting scarce.

                                4. If you owned a car and then gave it up, what process did you go
                                through to do so? (e.g., did you go through a process of gradually
                                using the car less and less, or did you give up using it all at once -
                                - going cold turkey?)

                                I'm still reducing my car use as my budget allows for more riding
                                clothes. I would have needed skiing goggles of some sort to ride
                                today, and I didn't have those.

                                5. What tools or factors have helped you the most in being able to get
                                around without a car? (e.g., living close to transit, living close
                                to work, owning a folding bike, joining a car-sharing club or
                                co-op, etc.)

                                I have a bicycle, and a stepmother who works in the city I sometimes
                                need to go to at times which cover the failings of the bus schedule.
                                I live downtown in my town.

                                6. What, if any, factors have made it difficult?

                                Climate and hills. Today there is a windchill factor of -20f; gusts
                                of over 40mph; on my commute to work, these are headwinds, while
                                riding uphill. I took a car, as I don't have goggles and the chill
                                caused my eyeballs to hurt when walking in town yesterday. I expect
                                it will get colder after winter starts.
                                My job is 7 miles away. This shouldn't be an issue on my mountain
                                bike, but there is a 2 mile long steep uphill on the way in, and the
                                trip is entirely sloped uphill; on the way back, it would be downhill
                                if it weren't for a mile of grinding away in the very lowest gear.

                                7. What effect has the way you travel had on the people around you,
                                including children, family, and/or friends? Have any of them changed
                                their travel behavior or relationship with cars as a result of what
                                you're doing?

                                I've been advocating that people make preparations for the end of
                                oil. They seem to pay attention to the relationship between their
                                car, politics, and their bank accounts more than they did.

                                8. What are the advantages of being car-free and/or getting around
                                without using a car?

                                Not feeling the need to drive everywhere, knowing the area better.

                                9. What are the disadvantages?

                                Not being able to carry anything after packing less than half of the
                                cold weather/rain clothes I might or might not need to carry on a
                                given day.

                                10. Would you recommend car-free or "car-reduced" living to your
                                friends?

                                I already do.

                                11. What differences does travelling without using a car make for you
                                in terms of time?

                                Pretty wildly variable, because of freakish bus schedules and the
                                like. Bicycle takes about an hour to cover trips that take 15-20
                                minutes on a car or an hour and a half by bus.

                                12. What differences does travelling without using a car make for you
                                in terms of money?

                                Costs quite a bit less, but i'm having to buy a lot of gear.

                                14. What role should automotive transport play in an overall healthy
                                and sustainable system of transportation?

                                Cars are great for transporting tools, goods, or the infirm, for
                                unusual trips, or as taxi services. If I need to haul a lot i'll
                                borrow a truck. If I need to travel at 3:00 AM i'll borrow a compact
                                car.
                              • John A. Ardelli
                                ... http://www.wicycle.com/dog.htm John A. Ardelli http://pedalingprince.blogspot.com http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/vofv/
                                Message 15 of 20 , Jan 31, 2008
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                                  On Nov 17, 2007, at 7:10 PM, Joseph Knasinski wrote:

                                  > Factors I'm considering that could prevent me from going completely
                                  > carfree, are . . . things like getting my pets to the vet . . .

                                  http://www.wicycle.com/dog.htm

                                  John A. Ardelli
                                  http://pedalingprince.blogspot.com
                                  http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/vofv/
                                • Heather
                                  I had no problems just putting my cat in her crate and the crate in my Burley solo (child trailer). The huge surprise was that the cat LOVES the trailer
                                  Message 16 of 20 , Jan 31, 2008
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    I had no problems just putting my cat in her crate and the crate in my Burley solo (child trailer). The huge surprise was that the cat LOVES the trailer whereas she always hated riding in a car! She was so good about going to the vet that I couldn't resist taking her out for a pleasant ride to the park the following day just for the fun of it.

                                    My child has yet to use his trailer (he's only two weeks old) but it has been pressed into service for many different hauling purposes and worked just fine. I was essentially car free for most of this year, although the new little guy is bringing some new, not-so-little challenges.

                                    "John A. Ardelli" <gelfling@...> wrote: On Nov 17, 2007, at 7:10 PM, Joseph Knasinski wrote:

                                    > Factors I'm considering that could prevent me from going completely
                                    > carfree, are . . . things like getting my pets to the vet . . .

                                    http://www.wicycle.com/dog.htm

                                    John A. Ardelli
                                    http://pedalingprince.blogspot.com
                                    http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/vofv/





                                    Thank the heavens I have nothing.Help me not to hate the ones I must destroy.http://www.crimethinc.com/

                                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                  • JOSEPH J KNASINSKI
                                    Thanks for the link: http://www.wicycle. com/dog.htm Excellent stuff. Joseph [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    Message 17 of 20 , Feb 1, 2008
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Thanks for the link:

                                      http://www.wicycle com/dog.htm

                                      Excellent stuff.

                                      Joseph


                                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    • David Hansen
                                      ... I though the idea was to taken them on pleasant outings first, so that they don t just associate the cage with the V E T. Perhaps the cat likes being able
                                      Message 18 of 20 , Feb 5, 2008
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                                        On 31 Jan 2008 at 19:02, Heather wrote:

                                        > I had no problems just putting my cat in her crate and the crate in my
                                        > Burley solo (child trailer). The huge surprise was that the cat LOVES
                                        > the trailer whereas she always hated riding in a car! She was so good
                                        > about going to the vet that I couldn't resist taking her out for a
                                        > pleasant ride to the park the following day just for the fun of it.

                                        I though the idea was to taken them on pleasant outings first, so that
                                        they don't just associate the cage with the V E T.

                                        Perhaps the cat likes being able to see out, which is generally not
                                        possible when a cage is put on the seats in a car. I hope your cat
                                        continues to enjoy the trailer.

                                        --
                                        David Hansen, Edinburgh
                                        I will *always* explain revoked encryption keys, unless RIP prevents
                                        me
                                        http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts2000/00023--e.htm#54
                                      • howlingfarmer
                                        Hello Everyone, Just wanted to introduce myself, so here are the answers to the questions. 1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one. _X_
                                        Message 19 of 20 , Jan 18, 2010
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          Hello Everyone,

                                          Just wanted to introduce myself, so here are the answers to the questions.

                                          1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one.
                                          _X_ I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently

                                          2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive transport as your principle means of transportation?

                                          I have been trying to minimize drivivng for almost 30 years. This was easy when I lived in Davis, CA. Sometimes my truck sat for weeks. One year the leaves fell and actually composted in the truck bed because I never drove anywhere. But I moved to Upstate New York in 2004 and since then it's been harder. After reading Divorce Your Car and being so inspired by Katie, I decided to make a real effort to make my bike my main form of transport again. I'd love to be car free, but I'm not sure it's possible given my circumstances. We'll see!

                                          3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end your reliance on the
                                          automobile?

                                          Most recently, Katie Alvord. Before that, I disliked that cars were bad for the environment, and I really enjoyed biking so much more.

                                          4. What factors have either impeded or inspired your decision to reduce your reliance on automotive transport?

                                          I live 4 miles out in the country, and Upstate New York winters can be brutal, at least for someone coming from California. Also, there's no shoulder on the rural road we live on. Cars drive fast...we also live on a small farm, so we have animals that need heavy things, like feed, that I can't reasonably transport by bike. So I have to try to work around that, try to have things delivered etc. We do have a horse that drives. I'm planning to try to use him to pick up things like feed, straw, etc. But right now the wagon I have is too heavy for him to pull with a load. So I need to find a lighter wagon before this can become a reality. This area is also REALLY hilly. The difference in biking was quite a shock. Back when I moved here, the first time I rode my bike to work, I thought it would be a piece of cake -- only 10 miles! But there were three summits...I swear I would have hitched a ride with Charlie Manson if he'd come by and offered me a ride in a pickup!

                                          5. Has your transportational choices had any discernible effect on your family and friends?

                                          In Davis, so many people used bikes as their main transportation that it wasn't an issue. People here are probably going to be perplexed when I won't do things if it involves driving. My daughter will still be using the truck to get to work. She leaves for work earlier and it's still dark and traffic is at its busiest that time of day. She rode her bike in the summer when it was light, but I worry about her being hit by a car.

                                          6. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being car-free and/or getting around without using a car?

                                          It just feels so much nicer in so many ways not to drive! And I feel so much more connected with the community (not to mention in better shape.) But around here trips take a lot longer using a bike and public transportation.

                                          7. Do you typically feel comfortable recommending car-free living to your friends and/or relatives? Why or why not?

                                          In Davis, I did. Here, I'm not sure yet. I would if it weren't for the safety factor.

                                          8. Have you experienced any adverse consequences of reducing or eliminating your automotive dependency with regard to time and finances?

                                          Not yet. I'm trying to simplify my life so time won't be an issue.

                                          9. Have there been any benefits?

                                          I love getting the exercise, being out in the fresh air, not polluting while I'm commuting.

                                          10. In an ideal world, what role should the car play in the general transportation system?

                                          Ideally, we'd have such great public transportation and cycling would be so popular that only people who couldn't ride (the elderly, disabled) would drive.

                                          11. Do you have any other personal or general thoughts you've care to share on this topic?

                                          I would really like more people to take up cycling as their main transport. If people would just try, maybe they would enjoy it! But I want to be mindful not to think I know what others should do.

                                          12. Where do you live (city, state, country)?

                                          Trumansburg, New York, USA


                                          Thanks!

                                          Leslie
                                        • George Keagle
                                          Leslie: Welcome. Many here still have cars, I think, but are looking at alternatives. I m old and my need to transport myself by car is not as great as when
                                          Message 20 of 20 , Jan 25, 2010
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Leslie:

                                            Welcome. Many here still have cars, I think, but are looking at alternatives.

                                            I'm old and my need to transport myself by car is not as great as when my children were young. My grandchildren (22 of 'em, 4th great grandchild due in June) are also less dependent upon my hauling them around than just a few years ago.

                                            So I finally became car-free in December. No more license, no more state-mandated insurance. I've biked for many years and am in better physical condition than most 73 year-olds in Des Moines, IA.

                                            For you living on a farm and having only a farm road -- especially if it is heavily traveled -- it may not be practical to be completely car free at this time. We're farmers (Iowa) and know the need for a truck to haul livestock, feed, supplies, produce, etc.

                                            Best of success and hope to see you post again.

                                            Regards,

                                            Geo. Keagle




                                            ________________________________
                                            From: howlingfarmer <lak34@...>
                                            To: CarFree@yahoogroups.com
                                            Sent: Mon, January 18, 2010 5:41:40 PM
                                            Subject: [CF] Introduction


                                            Hello Everyone,

                                            Just wanted to introduce myself, so here are the answers to the questions.

                                            1. Which of the following best describes you? Please check one.
                                            _X_ I own a car but use other forms of transport frequently

                                            2. How long have you been either car-free or used non-automotive transport as your principle means of transportation?

                                            I have been trying to minimize drivivng for almost 30 years. This was easy when I lived in Davis, CA. Sometimes my truck sat for weeks. One year the leaves fell and actually composted in the truck bed because I never drove anywhere. But I moved to Upstate New York in 2004 and since then it's been harder. After reading Divorce Your Car and being so inspired by Katie, I decided to make a real effort to make my bike my main form of transport again. I'd love to be car free, but I'm not sure it's possible given my circumstances. We'll see!

                                            3. What inspired your decision to reduce or end your reliance on the
                                            automobile?

                                            Most recently, Katie Alvord. Before that, I disliked that cars were bad for the environment, and I really enjoyed biking so much more.

                                            4. What factors have either impeded or inspired your decision to reduce your reliance on automotive transport?

                                            I live 4 miles out in the country, and Upstate New York winters can be brutal, at least for someone coming from California. Also, there's no shoulder on the rural road we live on. Cars drive fast...we also live on a small farm, so we have animals that need heavy things, like feed, that I can't reasonably transport by bike. So I have to try to work around that, try to have things delivered etc. We do have a horse that drives. I'm planning to try to use him to pick up things like feed, straw, etc. But right now the wagon I have is too heavy for him to pull with a load. So I need to find a lighter wagon before this can become a reality. This area is also REALLY hilly. The difference in biking was quite a shock. Back when I moved here, the first time I rode my bike to work, I thought it would be a piece of cake -- only 10 miles! But there were three summits...I swear I would have hitched a ride with Charlie Manson if he'd come by and offered me a
                                            ride in a pickup!

                                            5. Has your transportational choices had any discernible effect on your family and friends?

                                            In Davis, so many people used bikes as their main transportation that it wasn't an issue. People here are probably going to be perplexed when I won't do things if it involves driving. My daughter will still be using the truck to get to work. She leaves for work earlier and it's still dark and traffic is at its busiest that time of day. She rode her bike in the summer when it was light, but I worry about her being hit by a car.

                                            6. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being car-free and/or getting around without using a car?

                                            It just feels so much nicer in so many ways not to drive! And I feel so much more connected with the community (not to mention in better shape.) But around here trips take a lot longer using a bike and public transportation.

                                            7. Do you typically feel comfortable recommending car-free living to your friends and/or relatives? Why or why not?

                                            In Davis, I did. Here, I'm not sure yet. I would if it weren't for the safety factor.

                                            8. Have you experienced any adverse consequences of reducing or eliminating your automotive dependency with regard to time and finances?

                                            Not yet. I'm trying to simplify my life so time won't be an issue.

                                            9. Have there been any benefits?

                                            I love getting the exercise, being out in the fresh air, not polluting while I'm commuting.

                                            10. In an ideal world, what role should the car play in the general transportation system?

                                            Ideally, we'd have such great public transportation and cycling would be so popular that only people who couldn't ride (the elderly, disabled) would drive.

                                            11. Do you have any other personal or general thoughts you've care to share on this topic?

                                            I would really like more people to take up cycling as their main transport. If people would just try, maybe they would enjoy it! But I want to be mindful not to think I know what others should do.

                                            12. Where do you live (city, state, country)?

                                            Trumansburg, New York, USA

                                            Thanks!

                                            Leslie







                                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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