I got to work this morning by paddling my kayak across the Hudson River, then riding my bicycle (already cached in Tarrytown) the rest of the way to work. It was a perfect morning for my first paddle and pedal commute of the year. And, looking up at the line of tractor trailers stopped in the eastbound lanes of the Tappan Zee Bridge, I did not spend one second wishing I was driving to work. This is my best zero carbon commute option, but I would probably keep doing it even apart from the carbon advantages. It’s a great whole body workout. And at any given hour of the day I would rather be paddling a kayak or riding a bike instead of being in a motor vehicle.
Of course, at two hours door to door, plus sore muscle recovery time, it’s not something I can do every day, or something that most people can do at all. It helps that I have flexible hours — and a shower — at work. I aim for two to three days a week for my sea level commute during the six months of the year with extended sunlight.
Face it, motorcycles are wicked fun. My Zero goes 95 miles an hour — faster than I really need to go on two wheels. It has a range of around 80 – 140 miles (the faster you go, the shorter the range). Somehow I always end up getting to work faster when I ride my Zero than in a car. I ride it to work whenever the sun is shining, roads are dry, and the temperature is above 25 degrees F.
For the snowy, rainy, and cold days, I know have my adorable little Smart car. Why wait for the $35 grand Tesla Model 3 when you can get one of these babies for about $130 a month, three year lease. Whatever excuse people think they have for continuing to drive fossil fuel powered cars, “Electric cars are too expensive” is no longer one of them. The range on the Smart is comparable to the Zero, between 50 and 80 miles depending on the temperature outside (heater and AC really kills the range). Like the Zero, it plugs right into a regular house socket. It’s not as zippy or fast as the motorcycle, but it is zippier than Robin’s Prius, and much much safer than the motorcycle. And, who really needs a car bigger than necessary to carry two people and a husky? (Just kidding).