Going a Little More Native

Everyone rides a bike in Chile as few can afford a car like in America. It is an extravagant luxury to be sure so when you see them, you make assumptions about the owners. There is also public transportation, primarily the bus. It will take you most anywhere. I do have a car at present. After all, I have had one for years and years. It seems odd to me to go on foot. It makes much more sense to go by bike and you can get a decent hybrid bike for under $500. Now that’s a savings. Think about the gas and oil expenses for an automobile and all the necessary repairs. With a bike, you are free to roam and it doesn’t cost you much to do so.

I love bikes anyway so that helps me make the decision to sell the car. Even though they are practical, they are also fun and they take you wherever you want in a jiffy. They are easy to house in the garage or backyard unlike a car that takes up a lot of space. Often people end up parking them on the street in front of the house as there is either no garage or it is full. Life isn’t like in the U.S. where you have all kinds of room. You have to make decisions as to what needs proper housing. The lifestyle in Chile is modest and it doesn’t pay to get an expensive house when you don’t have to.

Think about the freedom a bike offers. You see them everywhere on the roads—around the city, going out into the country, and especially the boondocks. You can tote most anything on your bike as most come with a basket in the back. You can stow whatever you need for the day and then some. After all, bikes are the messengers of the country. They deliver goods at short distances upon demand. This is not limited to lunch or dinner like in the U.S. You might order something from a general store and it will arrive within minutes. Personally, I like walking in my neighborhood when I am not riding a bike because you see so much of the life that goes on. That’s what I like about living in a foreign country. I don’t want to be distant from the action and the best way I know to participate is to do your own shopping and errands. I do this as work permits as I am office in my medical office. I try to take time at least one day a week to get out among the people.

I love weekend trips on the bike, my wife at my side. You can roam and rove as you wish. You see lines of bikes on the road seeking the peace and quiet of the countryside. The scenery in Chile is so beautiful and a bike is one way to explore it. I believe in making an adventure out of my new bike. As a result, I know I made the right decision.