1· How long have you been walking/biking/scootering to school?
My son has been riding his bike to school since he started kindergarten in September. He rides to school rain or shine, day or night. He has been riding a two wheeler since he was four and has been riding on the back of our tandem since he was three. Our Bike Friday Family tandem is designed to have a three year old on the back, pedaling. On weekends, we usually go for a longer ride, about 3 1/2 hours or so. We have not owned a car for over 12 years.
2· Why did you start?
We have always been riding, so there really never was a start, it’s just what we do every day, for everything. My wife was riding before I met her, I was riding before I moved here. I took my son for his first ride when he was four days old. For us, we always ride, every day, for everything.
3· What’s one fun story from your walking/biking to school?
My son Finley knows where all of the puddles are on our route to school and usually, we have time to run through them a few times. Luckily, our bikes have full fenders and mud flaps, so we stay fairly clean.
4· How does walking/biking to school impact your ability to get to work?
Riding to work is faster and easier than the bus, driving, walking, or riding a motorcycle. I’ve tried them all. I ride from the mission to the top of Nob Hill, Grace Cathedral. There is no parking for cars or motorcycles and the bus takes 45 minutes. Walking is actually a nice change, but it takes about an hour or so. Riding to work gives me the flexibility and speed to run errands on the way to work in a timely manner. Stopping by the grocery store, post office, fabric store, hardware store, it’s all quick and very very easy. I often wonder why folks prefer to drive, it takes so much longer. A few weeks ago, some friends were visiting and wanted to see where I work. I got on my bike and told them “I bet I’ll get there before you.” I beat them by a few minutes.
5· What advice would you give to other parents interested in walking/biking to school?
For cyclist, ride whatever bike you have and just have fun with it. Wear whatever you want to, and let your kid ride and wear whatever they want to. Get some lights for safety and obey the traffic laws. Make it safe for everyone, including cars and pedestrians. Start slow, then go slower, you might miss a rain puddle.