I’ve always loved the idea and even most implementations of mass transit. But I find that the practical reality favors personal transit.
I’m biased, living in Texas - I’ve seen people drive to their mailbox[sup]1[/sup]! But I couldn’t imagine driving in New York City or Tokyo, and I’ve been driven around in both. I liked riding the Tokyo subway (but never experienced a “pusher”) and I like listening to books on tape door-to-parking-spot when driving and that seems too distracting while using mass transit.
My question is, how does mass transit work comfortably and practically for you?
[ul]My train experience is - I get in my car and drive to the train station. An ironic beginning. I navigate the cold, or sun, or rain, or wind to the depot. I get a ticket and wait in the weather or behind a wind-break for the train. I find a seat and am glad I don’t have to carry anything. I travel (and enjoy it). I arrive and then have to walk on average a quarter mile to wherever I’m going in whatever the weather is.
[/ul][ul]By car - I start in my garage. I drive listening to an audiobook. I adjust the temperature and fan as I drive. I arrive in the company’s covered parking garage. I walk in through a windy garage a short distance.[/ul]
I wear a heavy coat in winter and take an umbrella as needed. It’s scorching hot in the summer. How do you manage the weather and carry anything else? I can’t imagine grocery shopping, small appliance shopping, etc., and then taking mass transit. I buy food, cat litter, giant toilet paper rolls, TVs, PVC pipe, new drill, etc. and then take them home in my car.
The debates[ul]How do you incorporate mass transit and get the everyday shopping, appliance purchasing, trips to dinner, and movies done?[/ul][ul]Should we suck it up and use mass transit because it’s better for the community, resources, and the environment?[/ul]
My two favorite anecdotes:[ul]I had a ride to the airport from downtown Manhattan. The driver zipped out onto the road and weaved through traffic like a madman. I thought to myself - finally, someone who knows how to drive![/ul][ul]A European couple visited Dallas and headed toward the NorthPark Center Shopping Mall. They spent a long time walking beside the highway looking for the underground tunnel to take you safely under the highway.[sup]2[/sup][/ul]
[sup]1[/sup] He was an elderly man in poor health. And he had a lot of classic cars!
[sup]2[/sup] We have no such concept of an underground walkway - or in getting anywhere without driving to it.