Biking has always served as a space for reflection and expedition in my life, from my childhood rides through Pennsylvania’s Lower Trail and Delaware’s Cape Henlopen State Park, to my more recent journey from State College to Washington with PA IPL.
Accompanied by my dad (Ted), I first rode to DC in the spring of 2017. This year my brother Eli will ride in his stead. Having been away at Macalester College in flat Minnesota all year, I look forward to reconnecting with both the Pennsylvania hills and my family on the 2018 trip. Last year I prepared by biking to school, but the persistent layer of Minnesota snow and ice, along with the absence of my bike here, presents a current challenge for me. While I haven’t been able to bike outdoors this year, I have been able to play lots of ultimate frisbee with the Macalester Purse Snatchers, as well as less regular stints of intramural basketball and dodgeball.
As I integrate myself into my new community at Macalester, climate change remains central to my dialogue in and out of class. I am involved with Fossil Free Mac, a student-run organization on campus urging Macalester to divest of fossil fuels. Reducing our reliance on fossil fuels seems daunting, but riding to DC is a tangible reminder of how possible it is to forego them, even for a few days. I plan to major in environmental studies and geography, with a minor in Spanish. The PA IPL bike trip supplies a concrete bookend for my year, as well as a synthesis of my concerns about climate change and my love of charting new territory.
Growing up in the Episcopal church, I never felt especially connected with my religion, but last year’s trip helped catalyze my faith journey. I’ve recently become interested in connecting with and learning more about the Jewish faith, in part because of recent exposure to its traditions, and in part because of the distant Jewish roots in my family, which I know little about. I look forward to engaging with the stops and sites at Jewish congregations, as well as the others, on the ride this year.
Donate online to PA IPL in support the PA-to-DC riders (or send a check, memo: bike 2018 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801)
to our 2018 SILVER sponsor Sun Directed,
Read Maggie’s 2017 profile.