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Thursday, February 7, 2013

Commuter Essays: Phil Perry

Posted By on Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 4:43 AM

click to enlarge Phil Perry - SUBMITTED PHOTO

This is part of a series of commuter essays written by transit participants. For more see here and here and here.

People often ask me why I commute by bike. The easy answer is I love riding my bike, but really there are so many reasons that it would take several hours to cover all of the stories and reasons for commuting. One of my best stories just happened a few weeks ago on my ride home. I was headed north on the Monon Trail and I slowed to see a cyclist who was stopped. I asked if he needed help or anything and he said he was fine so I moved on.

Moments later I heard a distress call of "Help, Help, Help Me". I looked up at the interstate that runs next to the Monon Trail and saw a man next to his car trying to flag me down. I couldn't see if he was injured, had car problems, or what. As he started to come down the hill, I waited trying to figure out his emergency. A fence separated us, but I could see he was holding his bible so I figured something was really wrong.

When he got down off the interstate he said he needed some help, needed a phone, and asked for directions. I asked what was wrong and he said he had run out of gas and couldn't get off the interstate. He wanted directions to the closest gas station and to call his son to bring him some gas. I let him borrow my phone and gave him directions to a gas station down the road.

He thanked me and I continued to pedal my way home. Moments later it struck me how ironic it was commuting by bike and not having to worry about running out of gas. Bike commuting is certainly more enjoyable than driving and far and away better than paying for gas or running out of gas.

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