Those classy cars in my driveway belong to my neighbors. My son says the revolving mini-fleet makes the house look lived in, just one good reason to share the space. Truth to tell, I don’t need the driveway because I don’t own a car. Car-free living has actually become an avocation, an ethical issue, and a key element of my persona.
Granted, I’m fortunate. I live on a bus line. I’m mobile. My schedule is flexible. I am well aware that not everyone can enjoy the luxury and economy of the car-less life. Still, what has surprises me, is to learn just how many people are doing just that. My unofficial observations, supported by real data, affirm that vehicle liberation is a growing lifestyle choice.
I was trying to pull together some “how to” thoughts on the topic when I googled and found a wikiHow on the very topic. The group-generated tips reflect exactly what I have experienced and what I would propose. Over one quarter million googlers have checked the wikiHow link.
My absolutely favorite tip is that’s kept me going on some wintry evenings, i.e. “If absolutely necessary, don’t hesitate to flag down a taxicab, or rent a car or truck. After all, you’re probably saving at least $6000 a year by not having a car.” I never act on that but it’s a great mental fallback.
As with every scratching of the surface, I have found a wonderful subculture of car free movers and shakers. Reading more about the movement I’ve thought and better appreciate my independence. Living Car Free is an eclectic mix of quotes and links and thoughts. One of those links led me to the Car Free Movement, a delightful amalgam of ideas with a great recommended reading list. It’s always good to have one’s ideas reinforced and refreshed.
Another post for another day: I’ve also discovered a fascinating sub-category of great guides to getting along without a car in a host of major cities. These are often geared to the traveler who doesn’t want to rent and drive in Los Angeles, or San Francisco, or Washington, DC, or Denver or Atlanta or wherever. These are great intros to public transit, bike rentals, tours and more. The thought of driving in an unfamiliar city terrifies me – the thought that neither I nor any other neophyte is going to attempt such a feat calms my nerves. Before you rent and risk it, check the web.