My E-Bike Changed My Life

One could change yours, too.

June 18, 2023 | Source: Slate | by Dan Kois

The other night, I was making dinner when I realized that we were completely out of ginger. Our grocery store is pretty close by, but it’s too far to walk and still get a meal on the table in time. You can drive it, but at dinnertime the parking lot is an absolute zoo. Forget circling to find a space—sometimes it’s so tough to turn left into the parking lot that you end up idling in the middle of the street forever. And did I remember to fill the car up with gas? What a hassle!

However, I wasn’t annoyed, because I had no intention of driving to the store. Instead I clicked on a helmet, hopped on my e-bike, and set out. I cruised past cars stopped in traffic. I sailed up a long hill. I zipped right up to the doors of the Harris Teeter and locked my bike to the rack, next to two other e-bikes. Yes, I still had to wait at a register, but once I was out, I rode home in no time flat. The trip was probably 15 minutes instead of a 10-minute drive, which, yes, means it took 50 percent more time. But it was about 700 percent more pleasant!

Since I bought this fairly inexpensive transportation device in 2021, I’ve ridden hundreds upon hundreds of miles, each of them replacing a mile I would once have driven in a car. I’ve taken uncountable trips to the grocery store, and scores of rides to the office or the Metro or to meet friends for a night out. Freed from traffic and parking worries, faced with a ride in the fresh air rather than yet another trip in a car, I go out more. My suburb has come to feel like a place newly worth exploring.

My e-bike has changed my life. I’m happier, healthier, and more active. My relationship to my community has been completely transformed. I guess I’ve become an e-bike guy. You can, too.