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Alamo Commutes Finds Love

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by Eric Cavazos
February 23, 2022

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This February I challenged myself to find love. I’m sure many people enjoy their commute to and from work but how many people out there actually love it? In a 2020 commuter survey conducted by the auto insurance website Compare, 38% of respondents said their commute was slightly positive, the most popular answer choice for that particular question. Of course, slightly positive is a far cry from love. Even though Alamo Commutes proposes the challenge to “Rethink Your Commute” and offers plenty of resources to fully enjoy your time on the road, this February task of mine still didn’t seem possible.

When thinking about transportation, commutes, or waiting at a bus stop, love is usually the last thing that comes to mind. Is it possible that you can find love while waiting at a red light? Can driving to work invoke pure elation? Is it possible that faced with traffic, accidents, and construction we can feel love? At first this proposition might sound absurd. But perhaps our commutes deserve a second chance.

I asked around to friends and strangers alike, if they ever found love on their morning commutes. While some laughed, asked me to repeat the question, or just stared blankly in confusion, I did get some genuine answers. One person responded by saying his morning commute was the best part of his day. He spent his morning on the LA metro closing his eyes and listening to music for 40 minutes. He said he felt peace and calmness, but not necessarily love.

Another person recommended I reach out to Sam Owczarzak, saying he had what I was looking for. He had found love while at a red light. I gave Sam a call the day before Valentine’s to hear his story.

Picture of Sam and his wife
Sam and his wife.

It was a Sunday afternoon at the intersection of Wurzbach and Babcock. The light turns red and Sam Owczarzak brings his Infiniti G35 to a stop. Looking into the car next to him he notices a familiar face, an old friend who once moved away but now has returned. They both had gone their separate ways, each married then separated, both now living in San Antonio. Sam sends a text saying that he’s right next to her, a text that would turn her head and lead to hundreds of texts over the course of the coming years.

Now married with three kids, Sam thinks about the chances of it all. “I went to go get some food and got lucky enough to see her at a stop light.” Now while others may sigh in frustration getting caught at a red light at the Wurz/Bab intersection, for Sam it’s a moment to reminisce.

While Sam found love while driving alone, I bet there are many other ways to go about it. Carpooling and taking the new HOV lane on IH-10 West, using the VIA goMobile+ app to track the bus in real time, or talking about commuter tax benefits with employers and colleagues may be the catalyst that leads you to LOVE your commute.