So after going a week without a car I thought it would be appropriate to give you all a report on how that went. Overall I have to admit I didn’t actually mind most of the experience.
Ok, I won’t lie. The one day it was a -44C windchill during my walk to the bus sucked…there is utter no way to sugar coat that. Yet if you dress properly for it (like minimum of two or three layers just about everywhere) and only have a small area to allow you to see you can endure it. I had no frostbite during any of my trips.
I think what I noticed the most about going careless was having to plan more about my trips. For example, taking the bus to work was fairly easy, but when I headed out one night to a meeting I had to look up which bus to take to get there. Not a big deal, but a different mind set. Also I noticed a loss of convenience, I just couldn’t stay later at work to finish something up for 10 minutes…I would miss my bus, so I had to consider if I was willing to wait for the next one in 30 minutes.
The experience also made me grateful for the friends who offered me the occasional ride. Often it wasn’t a big deal for them to help me out (in one case it was literally a one block detour), but it often could save me a half an hour or more on my day. I also enjoyed walking more to get some of my local errands done like picking up some books from the library. I did notice I had to watch how much I was carrying around since anything heavy could be a problem to walk around with for too long. I noticed the backpack helped a bit, but doing our major grocery run would require a cab ride home as there is just too much to haul.
So could I go careless on a permanent basis? In theory, yes, but given our transit system I would likely avoid doing that in Regina. It would be too big of a lose of convenience for us, given a lot of places we go on a regular basis aren’t well served by the transit system. Yet the experience did make me consider how much I am driving and make me appreciate what I do have. That old line from Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell seems to cover it “Don’t it always seem to go. That you don’t know what you‘ve got. Till it’s gone.”
So what have you went without? Did you ever go back or did it change your you?