So Long DC pt 1 – Let’s Just Walk

February 18, 2011

This might just be one of the most overlooked advantages of city living: the fact that you can walk or bike to most places that you want to go. I more or less grew up in the suburbs where no car means that you are primarily homebound. Walking most places was largely out of the question and biking presented an only slightly more appealing method of conveyance; even if you were up for the hike a lot of routes were simply impassable without an automobile.

While some will argue (rightly) that DC isn’t as friendly to non-vehicle-owning travelers as, say, New York or Chicago, the city still affords residents the luxury (and I do consider it a luxury) of not having to own a car. I think this has been on my mind a lot lately because I realized some time ago that when I move back to Charleston, SC I am going to have to buy a car. Bummer.

Voice your complaints about DC’s Metro system and I will willingly agree, but I’m not talking about busses and trains here. I have spent a lot of time walking and biking around this city, and these have become my preferred methods of transportation. It allows me to feel more in tune to the city in which I live, and it allows me to maintain (or so it feels, and that’s what counts) more control over my schedule. There’s nothing quite as bad-mood-inducing as waiting for a bus for half an hour when you’re in a hurry. Oh and it will probably be raining. And then there’s the lady yelling at herself. But I digress.

In this city you can walk or bike almost anywhere you need to go in a matter of minutes. I’m going to miss my walk to work in the mornings; this, I find, is the best time for absorbing coffee and music. I am going to miss not having to worry about driving home from the bar; if walking or biking is beyond your present capabilities, you can always hop in a taxi. Nothing in DC is that far away, it can’t cost too much. I am going to miss cutting through the parks that you might not even know were there if you drove everywhere. I am going to miss the sounds of the city that surround me as I pass through its streets. OK, that last one was pretty cheesy, but you’re just going to have to allow me that.

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