Tuesday, July 29, 2008

the more the merrier...

In a few weeks we will have been here two years.
Moving here was like moving back to America after living in a foreign country for a few years, but I had been living in California! Suddenly we had to drive our car again - everywhere! People in our new city looked at us strangely when we talked about biofuels, organic foods, bicycling, yoga. At one of my first staff meetings at the new job the head of our company asked who thought about 'green' issues such as recycling and sustainability when we made purchases - I was the only one who raised my hand. Things are changing a lot in the US, and in my city, and I am glad I am getting less strange looks ~ I just hope the trend continues. Could it be that America is finally waking up?

This billboard says a lot to me. (Yes, I saw it from my car, yes I have to drive a car more than I would like). When H and I saw this billboard we were ecstatic, shocked, delighted - a lady, wearing normal clothes, on a bike with GROCERIES! A significant sea of change has happened here - this same bike store has done very well in the past with the Mountain Bike craze - previous advertising would have been of a lycra-clad man mountain biking with an indication of speed. This billboard sums up the summer of 2008.

When we arrived in Minneapolis we knew we wanted to continue doing some of the things we had been doing, but we knew we wanted to be better about them. Somedays I still fall into my American ways and get in my car when I'm tired, or lazy, or busy, or it is hot and humid, and in the winter I will have to, but I keep trying to challenge myself, better myself, lead by example. I don't preach my ways, I simply live my ways - and I gain so much more in my life; my life here is more interesting for it. Biking has become a big part of this life change. I was able to commute by bus for years - until I moved here, I used to be able to walk nearly everywhere I needed to go in CA - here no, the organic grocery store was a quick walk or bike ride in CA - here it is a little further, here I have winter. But biking - that is one change I can make and I can push myself into doing more. I made up my mind about this long before I knew the Summer of 2008 would turn into US bike-mania, but you know what - I don't care, I love it that I am not alone. The more the merrier.