Wednesday, September 22, 2010

On the Road


Photo courtesy Flickr

Having convinced the family fourteen years ago that throwing away the car would be a good idea, herding dozens of horse power around is now an unusual experience. I knew the change was fundamental when I first boarded the bus: it was like moving to a different city. The point of view was higher, I had time to gaze, and the systems of supply changed radically.

A couple of weeks ago I rented a car to support a family visit and promptly went into culture shock. Two consecutive backbreaking days hoofing through big box merchandisers and five days holding myself upright at sixty miles an hour did amazing things for core strength and nothing for posture. Car seats should resemble saddles, so one could get a respectable workout while traveling.

I appreciate the freedom and flexibility of a private vehicle, I appreciate the economies of time, traffic willing, it permits, and I appreciate having had a chance to experience suburbs. I especially appreciate the rental company and life in a neighborhood that loves feet.

Years ago not too far from my front door, a figure drawing instructor remarked that the main thing about the human body is the upright bipedal structure. I feel far more human, whatever that may mean, when I can walk. Doing so keeps life in balance in every sense of the word.

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