The last 1/4 of my daily commute home usually involves the Thruway. This is by choice and quite honestly, while I prefer to drive the back roads for all of my commute, there is a part of me that wants to get home as quickly as possible, and driving home on the Thruway allows me this luxury. Especially since driving on the Thruway means that I won’t have to deal with the endless construction going on along the newer parts of the Interstate System near our house. Construction crews aren’t working on the bridge that should be condemned; instead they are working on the bridge that was built 15 years ago.

I think I got off my original topic.

As I was driving along the Thruway this evening, I noticed that every vehicle that I encountered, aside from the tractor trailers, had all of the windows closed. Since it was in the mid 70s, I can only assume that the occupants of the vehicles were enjoying an air conditioned ride as they sped along at speeds exceeding the posted limit.

On the other hand, I had taken the top off the Jeep and I was enjoying the wind blowing me all over the place and the sunshine that was filling the Jeep (at least until sunset, which happened right before I got home).

I’m not a fan of air conditioning. I never really have been, but then again, I’ve never lived in an area where it was considered mandatory so my opinion could be changed if we ever relocated to a warmer climate. But as a person born and bred right here in Upstate New York, I can tell you that for me, fresh air trumps air conditioned comfort any day of the week. I would rather feel the warm breezes from outside with a tinge of “fresh country air” over the sterile, cool air blowing from your local air conditioning unit. Enjoying the ride like I did today made me think of how things were before everything was air-conditioned, or as I like to think of it, sterilized for your comfort. Perhaps I hearken back to the day before air conditioning was considered a necessity, but I feel much more in touch with everything that’s going on around me when I can feel the breeze, smell the scents and embrace the warmth of the sun.

You can ride all you want in your air conditioned vehicle, I’m certainly not going to stop you, but I invite you to roll down the windows, set down the mobile device and feel the world around you sometime. It might make your smile broader and your heart sing louder.

I know it has the effect on me.