(Pretend like I wrote this one on July 2 lol)
My sissy posted about her gas goal on her blog, and one of my friends has set a goal for herself of 25 miles of driving a week. I was really trying to be conscious of my driving through May, when I was biking to work a couple of days a week, but I couldn't seem to get below about 150 miles/week.
The problem is not short trips -- there are definitely days that I don't drive at all, since the grocery store, pharmacy, dairy queen, park, pool, etc. are all within biking or walking distance. I'm not driving at all around the neighborhood, and I'm trying to double up trips and not drive to either end of town more than absolutely necessary.
But my sweetie lives about 20 miles away, at least for the next couple of weeks (before he moves in with us!!!! ACK!!! whole 'nother post on a whole 'nother topic!!!) and even though I make him do most of the driving back and forth, I still end up doing some. Also, any time the whole family goes out of town, I end up driving because my car seats 7 peeps, so it totally makes sense for me to be the one to drive. Otherwise we'd end up taking two or three cars, which would be way worse in terms of carbon footprint. Two boys, a mom and a snake don't need a minivan, but two boys, a mom, a grandma, a grandpa, an aunty, an aunty's boyfriend, a sweetie and his two kids sure do! And my brother and his wife are moving here this month!! So, yeah. Minivan.
And I guess we go out of town more than I thought? It's a trip to the zoo, or a trip to see relatives in the mountains, or a camping trip, or going fishing in the next town over or...none of them are super long trips, but 50 or 100 or 120 miles on the weekend really bumps up the amount of gas I'm using and the volume of emissions I'm spewing.
So 25 miles/week definitely doesn't seem like a reasonable goal for me. On the other hand, 150 miles/week seems outrageous, not to mention expensive.
During the school year, 5 days/week X 5 miles each way to work is 50 miles. I can and will definitely bike often in the spring and fall, but honestly I feel a little wimpy about it in the winter. I want the goal to be something that's actually attainable. Oh, and if I'm taking classes toward my master's, that's like 60 miles round trip. So one class a week plus driving to work puts me over 100 miles/week even if I never drove anywhere else. Crap. Maybe I need to transfer to the university in my town? I really don't want to because of the fact that the program is much better where I'm going now, and I can do it at my own pace. The university here in town has a cohort program, so I think you have to take classes with the cohort. On the other hand, I could probably get done faster without the commute, which would be a very good thing, and maybe the degree is what really matters, and even if the program isn't as good, I would still have the piece of paper that lets me be a principal, which is the ultimate goal of the whole endeavor...
Sorry, getting a little off track there. But if you've got comments on this whole university dilemma, I'd love to hear them.
Ok, back to gas and mileage...When my sweetie lives in town, that will probably be 40 miles a week that will fall off automatically. Maybe I should try for an average of 90 miles/week over the course of a month -- that way if I end up driving out of town one weekend, I could be really frugal with driving the next week, and still come out ok. I just filled up my tank yesterday, and I've already driven 23 miles, so this will definitely be a challenge...