Photos by Matt Fischler

My wife, Irene, and I celebrated our eighth wedding anniversary last night.

As with most people, our lives are very different than they were eight years ago. When we got married I was obese and stayed that way until two and a half years ago when I picked up riding bicycles.

I could write for hours about how much a bicycle has changed my life, but suffice it to say without a bike, my life would be different. At the very least, it would be 135 pounds different.

Irene didn’t know going in to our marriage that I’d become as obsessed with bikes as I have become, but she has come along for the ride. Literally.

We’ve gone on bike dates before, but this was our first car-free anniversary. Our trip was 13 miles from our house to downtown Tucson for dinner, Fourth Avenue for coffee and star gazing on the university mall.

As we were coasting down a deserted stretch of road on our way home, we realized getting to and from your destination on a bicycle is part of the fun. I suppose we already knew that, why else would we dress up and then ride downtown, but it became so apparent last night.

Seeing the moon and stars, feeling the air get cooler when you enter a wash, listening to the silence and truly experiencing the world around us, were all moments we would have missed had we been in a car.

I’ve been covering bicycle news in Tucson for 9 months now, but sometimes it takes a ride like this to remind you the most important thing about riding bikes. It is a joy.

Happy anniversary, Irene. Thanks for coming along for the ride.

In the comment section, Christian asked if I would include an image before I started riding. The photo below happens to be the week that I first started riding.

14 thoughts on “Anniversary by bike: When getting there is part of the fun”
  1. Congratulations Mike (and Irene)! I’d love to see some before and after photos (obese and skinny) – bet it would be a powerful image of the potential of bikes.

  2. Congrats Mike!!! As a city we are lucky to have you reporting. You have done an amazing job in 9 months, creating a web site that is truly part of the cycling culture in town.


  3. Mike and Irene, congrats on the anniversary and many more. Glad to see the bike has had a powerful effect on you as it has on me. I lost 50 lbs. on the bike amongst other things. Keep it up.


  4. Congrats Mike. It’s inspiring to see how cycling has changed your life and I’m really impressed with the energy you’re putting into promoting cycling in Tucson.

    Keep up the great work.

  5. A very big congratulations Mike on your anniversary, for losing 135 pounds and falling in love with the bike (but you can’t love it more than you do Irene!), and for your great website. Funny thing about your last photo–you don’t look obese, you look like a Wildcat linebacker! (or at least “small” lineman).


  6. Aw. I am always happy to see how bikes make people happy. My husband rides an Xtracycle. We celebrate 17 years together this December. Perhaps I’ll have the courage to ride on the deck on our way to our anniversary dinner?

    Congrats! (And great photos btw.)

  7. What a great piece, Mike. The photos are wonderful. Congratulations on the anniversary and Tucson Velo.

  8. Congrats Mike and Irene, Major kudos to your relationship and Tucson Velo. It is easy to become hooked on cycling. The hard part is to realize it before there is no return.

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