Chad Burge
Three Rivers Market

I began my bike commuting back in Portland, OR.

I had moved out there without a car. My brother suggested I consider biking to get around the city. It was an odd idea. In my mind biking was something from childhood that I’d outgrown. It didn’t take long for me to fall right back in love with something I’d assumed was of the past. Sixteen years after taking up biking, I still get a thrill on every commute to work. I have kids now, so there is a lot of the time that I do spend in the car driving them around. The feeling is never the same upon exiting my car as when I pull up somewhere on my bike. I feel free. Biking slows you down, makes you take in the environment around you, connects you to people. I ride by a group of seniors that hang out in the community garden across from their assisted living building daily, and usually a wave or a smile is exchanged. Just the other day I was behind a young fellow riding a motorcycle, and he said, “You need to get one of these things.” I responded “Yeah, but I don’t have to pay for a gym, or gas with this.” He shrugged his shoulders and said, “Yeah, you’re right.”

Biking connects you to your body, to your environment, to your community. All in all, it makes you feel more alive.