My husband received a gift card to REI as one of his retirement gifts this last May, and we've been thinking and thinking about what to spend it on, since we're already pretty outfitted for our primary recreation activities of camping, biking and hiking.
After much thought, plus the persuasive powers of a post from Mr. Money Mustache, one of our favorite, if slightly irreverent, bloggers, titled "Try getting your groceries with a bike trailer" we decided to use the gift card to purchase a Burley Nomad cargo carrier in order to drastically change how we go about accomplishing our weekly errands. In addition to using it to carry our groceries, we plan to use it for other small item shopping trips in and around town, to tow our books and musical instruments back and forth to the university where we're enrolled in a lifelong learning program, and to carry chairs and a picnic to our town's weekly concert in the park. We're also thinking it's big enough to hold a couple of duffle bags - meaning some overnight bicycling trips might be in our future.
We hooked the trailer up for the first time this morning, and pedaled to Walmart to pick up a new oscillating fan and an assortment of other small household items we needed. We next headed to Trader Joes to pick up a few groceries, then over to the bank to pull out our weekly cash allotment, before returning home.
I have to say it was a whole lot of fun doing our shopping this way. It was nice just to be outside moving under our own power vs. being passively confined inside of a car. We also enjoyed seeing how many people took notice of our little trailer and smiled as we pedaled by. Because of the obvious space limitations, it forced us to edit our purchases and limit any impulse buys. And finally, it allowed us to leave our cars at home, saving on gas, as well as wear and tear.
Here are some close up photos of our spiffy new little trailer -
|All closed up and ready to go.|
|The large back end.|
|The smaller, but still very useful, front end.|
We're on the look out for even more ideas on how to maximize our new little trailer, which I'll share here going forward. Ideas from my viewing audience also welcome of course . . .