An Ode to My Bike
I rented a car for a week, just to see what it was like. Driving the Dodge Charger around the island for a few days made me realize just how fun driving really is. It changes me. I become a different person. I think I’m rich. Everywhere I drive, I want to buy something. I drive to the mall, drive to the beach, drive to the grocery store, and all I want to do is spend money. It’s like a hallucinogenic drug that makes you think you have a top hat and a parrot on your shoulder.
Driving around in the Charger makes me want to find a girlfriend to fill the other seat with. I just drive around with my arm over the seat next to me, as if someone is sitting there. Preferably a girl. It makes me want to go out on dates, and spend money on clothes and dances. It makes me want to spend money on overpriced food and atmosphere, and ziplines. I want to show off my expensive lifestyle to someone. To be some millionaire that blows all their money on an expensive girl who can validate my sense of self-worth.
But there are down sides to driving too. Sometimes traffic on Maui is bad. Driving to the other side of the island can sometimes take an hour and a half. It doesn’t matter how fast your car is, if there’s a traffic jam. There is only one road around Maui, so traffic jams can take hours. Compare that to biking home from Lahaina, which only takes me 30 minutes.
Returning the rental car turned out to be very expensive. I had to fill up the tank of gas, which cost $70. Then I had to find a car wash. Get a vacuum to clean the seats. And the entire week I was terrified that someone might key the car, or make a dent. Maui is notorious for having tiny parking spaces. Trying to park a big Charger is like trying to park a bus in a bathroom stall. You feel like you’re going to contaminate it or scratch it. I drove it like a kitten for a week, and I was a nervous wreck.
As I was returning my rental car, I began to worry about my bike. What if someone had stolen it? I just locked it up on some cheap bike rack. Someone could easily have stolen it, and I would’ve been without transportation of any kind. Maybe they took just the tire, which would still leave me stranded.
Thankfully, nobody stole it. It was right where I left it, behind the store, secured by a ten dollar bike lock. But riding that bike again made me realize just how much I love it. It’s crickety, it’s clunkety, but it’s a technological wonder, and so far I’ve clocked more than 3,000 miles on it, and all without a drop of gasoline. It’s the world’s most efficient form of transportation, and it runs on calories. I must’ve lost 20 pounds riding that bike this year.
It’s because of that bike that I can completely pay off my credit cards. With every pedal I save money that I’m not spending on expensive repairs and car insurance. That bike is literally saving me thousands of dollars, and helping to pull me out of debt faster than a car barreling through a stop light. It’s because of that bike that I don’t have a girlfriend who will drain my money, or resources, and I can just focus on improving myself. It’s because of that bike that I can tell the used car dealer, “Nah, I think I’ll just ride my bike,” when he gives me a bad deal. That bike is the only thing right now that is on my side, and I owe it some serious love. So, in commemoration, I have written a brief haiku:
An Ode to my Bike
Stay strong, little heart
As the traffic zooms and vrooms,
Stay strong and pedal