chelsea headingYessir, we Americans are far too obsessed with our automobiles. If you do not believe me, try to think of ten things you can do outside your home that doesn't involve your car. See, I told you. I know, I know, there are places where one can survive without an auto, but not everyone wants to live in a major huge city. And, he adds hastily, even in most of our big cities one needs an auto to get out of your neighborhood. Not every city has subways or good bus service.
Driving to the airport in Tulsa to do my volunteer job is like a try-out for the Indianapolis 500. Now, before you completely dismiss me as a cranky old man, let me tell you.
O K, so I am a cran. . .never-mind. I have driven in at least six foreign countries, all fifty states and the largest cities in the U.S. Yes, that includes NYC and L.A.
Those silly people in Europe think cities are supposed to be for people. They have these strange things called a bus. That is a large vehicle that goes from a place to another dedicated place and people ride on it. They get on, pay a fare, go to someplace and get off. Some even read a book or newspaper while traveling. Some actually talk to another person without have a virtual heart attack at every intersection. Some of the vehicles I saw, were three buses long. They were hooked together with accordion looking material. They held three times as many people. Yessir, I imagine they didn't turn many corners.
Oh, and the Europeans have another thing to travel in city to city. Those things are called "trains." Instead of two hundred people taking 200 autos for a hundred miles or less, they do not pollute the air and all ride comfortably in a train. I have ridden on these devices and it is quite nice.
In Finland, I would ride a train to and from our meetings. I paid a small fee, sat and read or watched the city swoop by. I spoke to many Finnish people, talked to several and enjoyed all of that. Yes, they had autos and we rode in many but, just going from my flat to a meeting I rode a train as they have of those available in most cities. Oh, their cities were not air-polluted.
We Americans could take some lessons from abroad.
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