Thursday, June 28, 2012

Words of Encouragement

Posted By on Thu, Jun 28, 2012 at 2:20 PM

click to enlarge Ashleybusstop1small.jpeg
This is part of a series of stories by Kimmel, who's given up her car and is relying primarily on public transit. More than once I have been asked for advice about going car-free from people living in Indianapolis. I suddenly find myself in this advisory position, which I kind of enjoy actually. Not that I think I have it all figured out by any means, but it's fun to think that I have the answers to people's anxiety and concerns. I have clearly been doing it pretty wrong and inefficiently, but having people look to me like I have the whole system figured out has been a great source of introspection for me.

I was loaned a car for the week while my friend was out of town. I got a dose of car driving, which made me realize how amazing it actually is to drive. The freedom I have felt this week, and the things I have been able to get accomplished, have given me a new sense of calm in an otherwise anxious state of being. I was able to go to two doctors' appointments, pick up some furniture, visit my family, go to the store for more than one or two bags of groceries and even spend a late evening out with friends I haven't seen in a while. It all felt so normal and easy.

On the flipside, I was late to work twice due to driving...not being able to find parking both times. I also ended up at that interview an hour early because I am not used to timing the driving and gave myself the same amount of time I would for a bus ride.

With all of this, I've realized that I've become quite adjusted and accustomed to this car-free lifestyle and all that comes with it. This is me. I am living it. It is not just something I have decided to do, but an aspect of who I am and the lifestyle I live. I've learned to make the necessary adjustments to my daily life and have gotten in the habit of waking up and planning my transportation out for the whole day down to the exact minute I should be coming and going anywhere.

People always ask me when I think I will buy another car. Honestly, I don't foresee it in my future at all. It is not even something I think about or hope for. I am uncomfortable in a car and greatly prefer life without it. I have instead found comfort in the fact that I don't have to worry about all the responsibility and headache that comes with car ownership.

I have strong faith that it's only going to get better and easier to get around without a car in Indianapolis. I know at least a few of you who read my blog (thank you, by the way) are considering getting rid of your cars and opting for the bus. To which I gladly say, join the movement and give me a reason not to have to write about it anymore!

In the meantime, I am happy to answer any questions or offer any advice to those of you considering freeing yourselves from your automobiles. Keep the emails and tweets coming.

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