Today is Bike-To-Work day. If you don’t have a job and are feeling left out, you have other options. Frankly, I can’t think of a better way to wait out the recession than to take a bike tour. It’s cheap, especially if you camp. It’s the right speed to see a country. It’s carbon-free, natch. And people receive you much differently if you show up under your own power, versus hopping off a bus or train with a horde of other backpackers.

For a taste of the possibilities, I recommend Ray Kreisel’s self-published e-book, A Different Kind of Freedom, chronicling his 3,300 mile pedal across Tibet. He describes how he never feels so alive, so in his element, so … at home as when he is rolling across the wildlands of the Tibetan Plateau. Makes me ache for the open road.