23 November 2013

Walking to School

Last February I moved out of my aunt and uncle's house into a house of my own.* I had many reasons for wanting to move, one of which was to be closer to my work. The ten minute commute I had was just unbearable. On days when I hit the traffic lights wrong it could take up to 12 minutes, and this was just unacceptable. My rule is if you can't drive where you need to go in one song's length then you needn't go there at all. It usually means I get half way to the grocery store before I have to pull over and walk the rest of the way. It's pretty annoying, but rules are rules. Anyway, my new house is within walking distance to my work. And my Church. And my girlfriend. And more than half way to my grocery store. I'm so close to my work in fact, that I walk to school everyday. 
Walking to work is one of the most underappreciated blessings of life. According to The Atlantic, less than 3% of Americans walk to work. I've also heard that only 2% of Americans are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and less than 2% of Americans grew up without a TV, so... I'm pretty much one of a kind. But back to walking. Here's what I love about walking to school:
  • It wakes me up. Seriously, moving around for 15 minutes before starting the work day is ideal. I've gone running before work in the past, but that just gets me tired because I have to get up early and then I'm tired after my run. With a 15 minute walk I don't have to shower after, I only have to get up 10 minutes earlier, and I arrive at work with my blood flowing. 
  • It provides great thinking. I get 15 minutes before work and 15 minutes after work to just ponder. What do I think about during the only 30 minutes of my 'alone' time a day? Well, it differs by the day. On Mondays and Fridays I weigh the pros and cons of earbuds verses over-the-ears headphones, mostly. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I usually try to solve the Border/Immigration problem. On Wednesday my mind is always dominated by the intricacies of keys. I just don't get how the ridges line up so uniquely in the keyhole? Beats me.
  • Your feet never let you down. Okay, that's not literally true. (Every time I sit down my feet let me down. But then they pick me back up!) When I go outside to walk to work I don't have to scrape the ice off the windshield, wait for the car to warm up, siphon gas from my roommate's car in order to get mine started, or pick a radio station. I just walk outside... and then keep walking all the way to work. My feet always start in the morning- no matter how cold it is, they're always registered and never get tickets, they don't require gas, and I never forget where I left them.
  • "But David, it's so cold in the morning! Wouldn't you rather get in your warm car and be at work 2 minutes later rather than walk for 14 minutes in 30F temperatures?" No. Remember how I said I was one of a kind? Cars are a huge convenience and a huge hassle. Feet are reliable.
  • I'm a believer in little things. Skip that one extra cookie and it will make a difference. Smile at one extra person and it will make a difference. My commute to work is only 0.9 miles. The economical and environmental impact on not driving those 1.8 miles a day are pretty minimal. But I believe in little things. If everyone in America drove 1.8 miles less a day we would see a huge difference in our pollution. If every  American walked 1.8 miles instead of driving 1.8 miles a day we would see significantly less obesity in America. I believe that that 'through small and simple things are great things brought to pass' (Alma 37:6)
Yep, don't expect me to stop walking to school anytime soon. Also, my feet have been likened to Hobbit feet, which may explain why I love walking so much.

*Six other people also claim my house to be theirs, but whatever.

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