Life In the Wake of a Pandemic – Manuel’s Advice

April 28, 2020

I am Manuel Felix and I was awarded the AIS Scholarship for my 2016 fall school year at Arizona State University. After graduation with my degree in communication and technical writing, I secured a job with Desert Diamond Casino where I work in the surveillance department. I utilize my education received from ASU on a daily basis. I write and edit surveillance training manuals. I oversee the surveillance department and edit surveillance officers’ incident reports. American Indian Services, thank you again for believing in me while I pursued my dreams of higher education.

I want to share my thoughts with you about the mental, spiritual, physical, and emotional healing that can be achieved though riding your bicycle. These are all things that we need during this COVID-19 crisis. Throughout the four year journey while attending ASU, I rode my bicycle around town. Everywhere I needed to go was traveled by bike in the blistering heat, rain, sunshine, and high winds. I commuted through it all. Navigating through the city on my bicycle proved to be rewarding. After graduation in 2017 I still continue to get everywhere I need to go by bicycle.

I know what you’re thinking? Ride a bicycle? No way! It’s dangerous, it’s too far, it’s not for me. People have become car dependent. “For a lot of people a car means freedom and social status, but if a city provides you no choice but to drive, a car isn’t freedom, it’s dependence. If you have no choice but to drive for every trip, it’s not your fault. Your city has failed.” says Janette Sadik-Khan. Khan, Director for New York City’s Department of Transporting who is also an avid cyclist.

Riding your bicycle everywhere you need to go will give you a sense of freedom. Riding your bicycle for short trips will save on gas money, and wear and tear on your vehicle. While implementing new riding habits, you will work on the physical benefits of cardio. You will also gain a sense of self-pride, knowing that you are getting the exercise that your body needs.

Not only will this prove beneficial to personal needs, riding your bicycle helps worldwide.  Our carbon footprint is greatly reduced by not commuting by vehicle. No carbon emissions are released while riding your bicycle. Just power, imagination, and sweat are needed to power the bicycle.

Mental, spiritual, physical and emotional healing is obtainable while replacing the vehicle to navigate the area you live in by bicycle. Mental healing in the sense of receiving a quiet mind from riding, nothing but you and the open air to gather your thoughts, explore ideas, and obtain inner peace. We all need time for ourselves and to decompress in our own ways as we’re cooped up at home right now. I have found that when I feel blue or on edge, taking that bicycle ride helps out. Alone time develops incredible knowledge of self in these hard times that we all must face. Remember that mental, spiritual, physical and emotional healing can all be obtained by riding your bicycle during this Covid-19 crisis.



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