Maria Contreras Tebbutt
As the founder of The Bike Campaign and Director for the Bike Garage, people often ask when I developed such a passion for bicycles. As a Davis resident, I’ve been riding a 2-wheeler since the age of 6, riding by myself to school by the 2nd grade. This was right about the time that Davis was experimenting with the installation of the first bike lanes in the U.S. Then about 15 years ago I saw a photo of a family on the front page of the Davis Enterprise who had made the commitment to be car free. This family inspired me to ride my bike more often and as it turns out, Robb Davis the person that the story was about became Davis’ Mayor.
I met Tim Bustos, Davis’ first Ped/Bike Coordinator, who introduced me to a book entitled “Divorce Your Car”. This book ignited in me a curiosity to see what it would be like to reduce my family’s car dependence, reducing from two cars to one. Our daughter, who is 27 years old to this day still does not own a driver’s license and she is part of a very large tribe of millennials who eschew driving. At first my husband fretted about what would happen if we both needed to use the car at the same time, so we signed up at a local car rental so that we would have a car at our disposal if needed. As it turned out, our neighbors noticed what we were doing and generously offered the use of their spare car which we have used very rarely over the past 7 years.