We had our first snowfall of the season in my part of Indiana on Monday. Neither dog wanted to be outside, and I don’t blame them. The snow didn’t stick around. In fact, it didn’t stick at all. The ground was too warm after a few days with afternoon temperatures in the high 60s.
Sunday, as I was about to leave for work, I discovered the back tire of my bike was flat, so I ended up walking to work, a mile-and-a-half trek. I stayed downtown for dinner and walked home. It was a nice night, even as the wind was picking up.
Monday, I put air in the tire a couple hours before it was time to leave for work. The tire was still full when I came home for dinner, though it started to feel a little soft on my way back downtown. The tire still had air in it when I left work to come home tonight, but I ended up walking the final few blocks, as the tire was just too soft. In the morning I’ll pump the tire up again and try to get to the nearest bike shop and pick up a patch kit and possibly a new tube.
As I was leaving to head back to work, my wife asked whether the weather was to the point where I want to get a car again. No, it’s not. Ask me when the roads are icy and the city hasn’t cleared the sidewalk across the bridge, and I might have different answer. For now, I like the freedom of not owning a car.
Which brings me to an article I read tonight: More women have driver’s licenses than men. My mom didn’t learn to drive until after I graduated from high school. Her mom didn’t drive either. I don’t know about my dad’s mom. I don’t think she drove. Today, all of the women I know have driver’s licenses, except maybe one. Even my mom drives. My grandmother learned to drive after my grandfather died. But then, all of the men I know have driver’s licenses, too.
Getting a licenses was such a rite of passage when I was a teen. I dutifully took driver’s ed then got my license, and I’ve had a license for 37 years. Today, fewer young people are getting licenses. As someone who has chosen to live a car-free lifestyle for the time being, it’s gratifying to know young people don’t see cars as the only option, as I did when I was younger.