Suburban nightmare

Last week was a kind of nightmare. My car was broken. Well, it was actually immobilized, which occurred after a thorough mechanical /technical/computer investigation.  What happened in the meantime was a week of hanging around with public transport…

Imagine when I moved to Gdansk six years ago I was so convinced not to buy a car. When I used to live in Wroclaw for almost 13 years I never had a car.  I just didn’t need it. A bus stop in front of my house and a stop in front of my office 35 mins later. That was all I needed for living. But when I lost my third pair of shoes just because of those morning walks to my new office in Gdansk I just gave up and got one, 6 years old Peugeot 406…. Yes, a brave new world opened to me after 3 months of a suburban “imprisonment”. All of a sudden I could easily visit my new friends or go for swimming, movies, shopping, haircut, post office, ATM and all these things without waiting hours for the only bus passing my neighborhood every 30 mins.

But now, without my car a 15-20 mins drive became inevitable 1h journey to school, to health center, to yoga… Well, no, yoga no. I gave up yoga for a moment, as well as haircuts, mall shopping, cinemas, friends etc. Thanks God the walking distance to my office hasn’t changed a yard…

I started to desperately miss again living in the downtown, from where going to work  every day could have been a book or newspaper reading pleasure or just a simple observation of other passengers and pedestrians through the windows. So what if I moved to Wrzeszcz for example?  Would 80% of my red line destinations (for which I always go by car) became green by changing my car to public transportation? I checked it and to most of my places you can get by bus, tram or a train leaving every 10 mins. Have a look at blurred (apologies) draft here:



So why do we keep ourselves in these golden cages of suburbia, where for walking out the dog you need a pair of  boots, torch, a night vision device and all this survival stuff? Now take a family of two children and add as much red lines as you can imagine – these are your never ending pickups to kindergarten, school, swimming pool, friends birthdays, shopping, shopping and shopping.
What a nightmare.


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