Category Archives: No Car

Gee…almost a month between posts!

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Hey, I’m on a roll…

Sorry no postie. I’ve been really busy at work. On a computer and sitting all day equals total aversion to sitting down in front of a computer at night.

I’ve been sitting, but not with the computer.

I’ve done a few rows of knitting here and there. I’ve been reading. I’ve been listening to someone else read (books on CD anyone?). I’ve been playing Xbox (yes, I do). Mostly tho, I’ve been collapsing on the couch after dinner and falling asleep.

I’ve started a Pilates class on Wednesdays at noon. Unfortunately I’ll have to stop that after this month. I just can’t keep up with it financially. I am going to get 2 good months out of it, so hopefully can continue on my own.

Been on the bike a few times.

I voted. Ms Cow wrote in Cow for Parks and Grasses Boss. Wonder what the vote counters thought of that. 🙂

Found a great hairdresser. Got great new color, went bold on a new, shorter cut. Lost a great hairdresser. Went back for great new color and to maintain cut. Color worked, cut, not so much.

Growing out hair…and will most likely go back to coloring my own hair again. I can color my own hair in an hour as opposed to 3 hours at the salon. And will still save money over getting it done at a school. As for cuts, I can go to the corner and get a quick trim for $10 with a coupon. Bim bam, I’m outta there! No more wasting an entire Saturday morning or afternoon sitting in a chair smelling chemicals for 4 hours.

It was good while it lasted. The salon folks were very friendly and really listened to what I wanted to do with my hair. I just can’t do it any more. Sigh.

I really do like my new cut, but it’s a pain. It grows out way too quickly. I can’t pull it back and still look nice – it takes about 8 clips to hold it back cos it’s so thick. I look like I was having something done at the salon and had to leave in a hurry.

If I leave it down, I get hot. Really hot. Especially when riding my bike. It’s like wearing a really really thick woolly hat that dips down over the back of my neck. All the time.

No thanks. I like the option of either putting it up or wearing it down or wearing it half up or whatever.

So I’m going to let it grow back. I miss my biking braids too. 🙂

Went thru an episode of Kitty not sleeping and MEOWING all night long. Is why I’ve been so damn tired. No sleep will do that to you. She’s sleeping again now, but I’m still not. Sigh. I’m getting better but I swear I still hear her MEOWING even tho she’s sound asleep at the end of the bed.

I’ve been trying to organize and get rid of about half of what I’ve got in this place before Honey and Cow arrive. Less than 40 days now and the place is not quite where I’d like it to be. I’ve got lots of things that need to go away and now need to find a way to get them away.

Getting a few items from a very generous friend that need new homes and I really could use here, so need to get back to work. They are arriving tomorrow.

Before I forget again…

Happy Biking Anniversary to me and my pretty pretty bike. Three years last month (Oct 16th) and still going strong. Really wish I could get myself in your saddle a lot more often.

Time to sort, organize and pack up give-aways!

2 years today!

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It’s been two years since my car stopped working and I couldn’t decide what to do with it. Eventually I donated my “Scooter” and I’ve been car-free since.

I’ve become buddies with the local car rental agency and they give me deals whenever I really need a car – visitors from out of town, KublaCon and so on. Various friends ask me every so often to “babysit” their cars when they are out of town.

All-in-all, I have not missed not having a car but for the few inconvenient times I was in a hurry, or it was HOT out or I had just missed the bus. Not really any occassions that would warrant buying a car.

That being said, I will buy another car eventually…most likely when I get another job. But it will be a small fuel efficient puddle jumper (as my Dad used to call small cars).

In the meantime, we have our awesome bikes, our transit passes and our feet to get us to where we need to go.

Happy 2 years without a car!!!!

Stay tuned – in two weeks, it’s my first anniversary with my Bike. 🙂

Category: Bike-a-licious, No Car

A new day

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OK, yes Rachel, I agree…but asswipe is all I could come up with too… Altho I gave the thief a compliment by saying he/she was an asswipe of the highest caliber. Should have been, you are the lowest asswipe of all, not fit to wipe the ass of the absolute lowest living thing that craps in this vast universe of ours.

There, feel much better now.

Have made my phone call to the BART Police to report the crime. They’ll get back to me. Sigh. Didn’t expect much could be done in the first place, but had at least hoped to get it all done with one phone call and not drag it out with waiting for someone to call back.

And “we’re very busy today” is not encouraging. Guess there’s a big crime wave. Not surprising.

Transit riders are an easy target…grab something last minute before the doors close and hop off. Victim is trapped on the train. By the time you call someone, the thief is loooooooooooong gone and so is your stuff.

Those that park at the stations are easy targets as well. Their stuff is left all day. Obviously no one is watching it the entire time, cos things get stolen. Sigh.

Anyway, good news is that I have wonderful friends. Giving me support, listening to me drone on and on about how pissed off I am etc, and also giving me leads on good sources of used bikes. Definitely not going to buy Spencer a brand new bike for him to schlep himself back and forth to the train station – that’s just asking to be robbed again.

If we hadn’t gotten this really nice bike for free, we would have bought a used bike for him anyway. He is still growing and goodness knows how big he’ll end up being. Not going to be buying him an expensive new bike every few years – not as cheap as buying him bigger shoes every few months or longer jeans – not like that’s cheap either, but, well, you know what I mean.

I figure for right now, just a basic bike that can get him to BART and back that won’t look too attractive to any asswipes trolling for goods. Hopefully, it will be good enough to also go riding about with me on the weekends as well. If not, Spencer and I can work together and save up a bit more after the Holidays are over and buy a second bike for our long weekend rides together.

I figure I can have enough put aside in a month to get him a good used workhorse for commuting.

Now, if I can just stop feeling guilty for having a nice, shiny new bike that I’ve just sunk a lot of money into… I know, no reason to be that way, but I can’t help it. We did chat a bit about it last night cos I just couldn’t shake the guilt. But Spencer understands, this is the first really, really, nice bike I’ve had and it’s basically my car, so I had to make the investment to get a really, good reliable bike.

Oh, and now I also need to get over the fear of going anywhere and leaving it locked up. I’m afraid someone’s going to take it and that would be just too much. Won’t stop riding it tho – on my rides, I go out and come back. I feel OK locking it up out in front of the Safeway, very high traffic area, so anyone with big cable/lock cutters stealing a bike would be quite obvious.

Oh, and no, I won’t be leaving it locked up at a BART station any time soon. Not just no, but HELL NO.

A Special Anniversary Today

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Hello everyone! No, I haven’t been sick with this cold/flu now for a year, but it sure as hell feels like it!!!!

One year ago today, I stopped using my car.

Why?

Well, it pretty much stopped working. My 14yr old Toyota Corolla, a.k.a. Scooter, had finally had enough. There were several things wrong with him, all of which cost lots of money – more money than I could trade/sell him for…

So then the question became, do I fix him or get a new car?

I did neither and donated Scooter to one of my favorite charities. It was the best thing for him, and for me, and it took me waaaay too long to make that decision.

Bottom line, Spencer and I take public transit or walk everywhere we want to go. We are fortunate in that 2 different bus lines stop at the corner by our apartment to take us to many wonderful places – the best of which is the BART station – which in turn connects us to the rest of the Bay Area.

If we have visitors in from out of town, like Mom and Sis, or Honey, I rent a car. When I took the boys to Kublacon, I rented a car. If I ever need a car, I rent it – and it’s not very often. The folks at the local rental car company are my buddies.

Several very awesome friends and even the Ex have loaned me their cars when they’ve gone on vacation. And those same friends, and others, and the Ex have graciously given us rides every now and then.

Once we sort out our bicycle situation, we’ll have yet another mode of transport. Spencer’s bike needs a tune-up and mine…well, Ms Puffy wasn’t cut out to carry my weight (I’ve gained and it’s too much for her to carry me and groceries), so I’m going later to check out some bikes while Spencer turns in his bike for the tune-up. Ms Puffy will be donated to my favorite thrift store where someone smaller will get much more use out of her and not try to kill her with weight.

And you just know mine is going to be tricked out with fenders ( I hate getting muddy stripes up my back when it rains), a back rack, and baskets all around! Cos I plan on taking my new bike everywhere. Just hope I can find one that can handle it.

Do I miss not having a car? Not really. I won’t lie and say no all the way, because there have been several times that it would have been so much easier to hop in the car and pop here and there real quick like.

Not having a car though really makes you think. You really have to think about how you are going to get somewhere. Is the trip really necessary? How early do you need to catch the bus – don’t forget to factor in if the bus or the train is late! Can you combine a bunch of things into this one trip out? Could you walk? Do you REALLY need that one something…is it important enough to take the bus all this way and take all this time…just for that one little something?

The benefits of not having a car? The obvious ones: no car payment, no insurance payment, no maintenance, no parking fees, no high gas prices, no registration, no smog check. The not so obvious ones: I spend less money since I can’t just hop in a car and drive myself to a store because I’m bored, we only buy what we absolutely need because we have to plan our trip and then carry it all home, our carbon footprint is a whole lot smaller now, we get out and walk more. Ummm…that’s not to say we don’t go crazy and buy stuff we don’t need though (i.e. all that yarn I stuffed into my cart today…and the xbox we bought a few weeks back).

Speaking of walking… I found out that within less than 2 miles of my apartment in any direction, is a total of 4 major grocery stores, a zillion restaurants, a post office, a pet store, 3 hardware stores, and so much more, it’s incredible. And here, I’ve been hopping in Scooter and driving to all these places all these years. Sigh.

Speaking of bus rides…I can take the bus in any direction from my apartment and in 10-20 minutes I could be at 3 different BART stations, two local downtown areas, 2 different craft stores, 2 different games stores, movie theatres, our family doctors, a Target, new book stores, used book stores, the car rental place, and the list goes on and on.

I swear, Spencer and I go out more and see more things now than we’ve ever done before.

And you know the best benefit of not having a car? I get to hang out with… The. Best. Cart. Ever. Made….EVER!

Everyone…meet Dot.

And we won’t discuss the very bad things she hears pouring out of my mouth when the bus is late. Yeah, that’s a major down side, but not enough to make me go out and pay high gas prices, get a car payment, pay insurance premiums, get the car licensed and registered….or get stuck in traffic.

Will I ever get another car? Yes, eventually – and I do check out cars constantly so that I know what I want when I finally do decide to get motoring again. In the mean time, I’ve gotten used to using public transit and look forward to tooling around on my new bike when I get it. Oh, and what’s really cool? The buses have bike racks and you can take your bike on BART. If I ever get tired, we both can have a ride. hee hee

I heart Dot, my BART EZRider Pass, my bus pass and my Translink card.