I Miss Having A Car
There is definitely something psychologically healthy about having a car. Holding that wheel, looking out across the unfolding landscape while listening to the radio. It’s such a zen experience. It gives you time to think, to feel in control of your life. You can do anything you want. It’s a luxury I’ve had to live without for the past few months.
Riding the bus has made me feel like a vegetable. Like a little child being driven around in a baby carriage, or someone with a disability. Sometimes I hold onto the top of the seat in front of me and pretend that it’s a wheel, and I’m driving the bus. It gives me the feeling of control.
It’s gotten to the point where I sometimes walk around and just pretend I’m driving. If no one’s around, I’ll put my hands out in front of me, and signal to make a left turn. Turning that invisible wheel and going in that direction just feels so good. It speaks to this deep inner need inside me, perhaps, inside every man.
Every day I come home I think to myself, “Someday . . . someday . . .”
Recently I’ve been riding my bike. Every morning I strap my laptop bag over my shoulder awkwardly and get on my bike to pedal to school. It takes about 30 minutes, but recently it’s been more like 40 minutes. I don’t know if I’m getting weaker, or if something’s wrong with my bike, but it’s just getting so hard to pedal. It seems like there are always these old guys who pass me going a hundred miles an hour on their bikes. Sometimes it’s children who pass me. Once it was a lady in a dress and high heels.
The other day I was riding home, and I realized I had a flat tire. I had to walk home in the rain for almost 2 hours. By the time I got home I was completely drenched and muddy. I thought to myself, “One day . . . ”
So today I took my bike to the shop to get it fixed. “You were riding with your tires too low,” the shop guy said. He fixed up my bike perfectly for about 15 dollars, and raised the seat, adjusted the gears, and repaired my tires. “There you go, just like new. Should be a lot easier.” I couldn’t believe it! It felt so smooth. Like a water slide. The ride home took me about 15 minutes! I barely had to pedal and the bike would just shoot out like it had a gas engine. I was going so fast I felt like I could almost keep up with traffic.
There’s one part of the highway where the bike lane actually goes into the middle of the road, because there’s a big turn lane on the right. There are four car lanes to my left, then a bike lane, then a car lane on the right. So for that few hundred yards, I’m in the road with the big boys, and I feel like I’m actually driving a car. It’s a good feeling. Like, “Hi guys, remember me?” and I think to myself, “Someday . . . one day . . . maybe in a year . . . I will have a car.”