This morning while checking the news, I ran across this article about biking (and walking) to work may lead a person to being happier. Having had a few days that were not the best lately, I decided I might as well go for it (keep in mind that much of Spring and Fall, I bike to work. I really have no excuse the other seasons because I live a little less than a mile away). And I do have to admit, there is something about biking to work that brings a smile to my face.
Well, the work day was actually quite good complete with some productive meetings, a great class, and some decent work done during the other times. Plus, I was able to bike to and from home for lunch, which led to some more smiling as I plotted what I needed to tackle in the office. I left the campus, feeling good and ready to drop by my house, change out of my suit, and head to the grocery store to pick up a few things.
Along the way to Dillons, thoughts of Melbourne kept coming to my mind. It may have been the overcast skies that reminded me of a late autumn day or this song that started running through my mind:
Or maybe it was that I was on the bike I had brought back with me or my old Australian helmet I was wearing (I gave my other helmet away and need to pick up a new one; however, this one is working well until then). Something though had my thoughts on biking through that amazing city. So I continued on the Vitality Trail, cycling by prairie dogs while smiling at the memories that kept popping into my mind.
After a quick trip in and out of Dillons, I had my four things I needed in my reusable bag that went into the basket on the back of my bike. As I finished a phone conversation with my good friend, Dr. John (having quite a few great friends named John/Jon has led to each of them having descriptors), I walked my bike towards the Dillons Trailhead where I saw a couple of guys under the gazebo. That is when the memory of the Hutchinson Area Cyclists‘ Monday night rides hit me.
With groceries in my basket, a not-fully-inflated front tire, and my having my commuter bike, I had no plans to join the group, but I wanted to go over and give Eric props for getting this group started. I chatted with the guys for a bit, and when 6:00 PM hit, my plans were still to head home. The persuasive John Fairbanks convinced me to take the long way back, and there really is no way to say no to that guy.
So my romaine lettuce, rice milk, and a couple of other things went on a 20-mile journey north of town. Deer and turkeys were out, and soon the clouds had parted to give way to one of those enchanting Kansas sunsets. Plus, the conversations were great as they went from bike riding to being a vegan in Central Kansas (one of the guys in the group was a vegan) to life in general. And there was the fact that Eric altered the course of all of our lives tonight by putting together Hutchinson Area Cyclists and organizing these weekly rides.
We parted ways, and after a few pics taken on the Vitality Trail, I finally made it home from what was going to be a quick trip to the store.
So now I sit here, quite happy as I eat another piece of my tasty bread as I think about all of the things I would have missed out on today if I would have driven my car instead riding my bike to work. Needless to say, tomorrow is going to be another bike day.