It was a beautiful morning on the bike path. The color of the ocean ranges from blue and blue-green to dark gray depending on the color of the sky. This morning the water was a blue-gray color because of the puffy white and gray clouds with only patches of blue sky. Sea weed had washed up all along the beach, and the air was filled with the seashore fragrance I remember as a kid when we traveled from our home in Portland, Oregon to "go to the beach" at Pacific City. This morning there were people meditating near the water's edge, and I felt one with them. I would have missed all this if I were still driving my car to work.twelve days ago, it was my goal to leave my car in the garage. I must admit that my smaller carbon footprint is a bit smudged this Monday morning, and I feel twinges of remorse. For the first time on Saturday I was "forced" to break my car out of the garage, my impulsive streak getting the best of me. As something of a tech gadget junkie, I drove to South Coast Plaza to keep an appointment with one of the "geniuses" at the Genius Bar in the Apple Store where they would treat my sick I-phone. (I wonder what Droid and Blackberry users do.) As I am sure those of you who are as plugged in to your hand held computers as I am can attest (like the Borg), this was almost a medical necessity. To think, ten years ago my hand held PDA (personal digital assistant) was a Palm Pilot on which I input to my contact list using a special alphabet with a stylus on the screen. My how technology has changed in the span of a short ten years! Now I have the world at my fingertips with current search engine technology, video over internet protocol, and cloud computing. In stark contrast, it occurs to me as an epiphany that with transportation we must move forward by going backward away from our high tech, gas guzzling automobiles.
A new friend from New York who I met at Bikestation last week just became an "Executive" Bike Commuter too. She lives near me, rides her bike to Bikestation and then hops on the Metro Blueline for LA. She works three blocks from my LA office. She says that since moving out here from NYC last year she has found it both fascinating and upsetting how little people rely on any other means of transportation than their personal vehicles. When you think about it, it does seem wasteful for me alone in my car to be using so much petrol to haul around thousands of pounds of metal as I drive to work. There is no doubt about it--I am definitely turning green.
For a couple of months longer than I, my daughter has parked her car in the garage and gone so far as to advise the DMV that she will not renew her registration at this time. Now that takes guts! As a student at Cal State University Long Beach she uses her Long Beach Transit bus pass or rides her bike to classes or work as a server at a nearby restaurant. She reports that her friends with cars are supportive and accommodating and usually willing to pick her up for mutual social outings such as movies, dinner and the like if she chips in on gas. In the future, I will seek more creative solutions--as my daughter does. Maybe there is a bus that goes to South Coast Plaza from Long Beach.
I imagine a time when transportation evolves at the same rate as computer technology. My community will have a teleportation machine. The transporter will dematerialize me into an energy pattern, then send me to wherever I want. Upon arrival I will be reconstituted as me again. Beam me over to South Coast Plaza, Scotty. Gas consumption won't be an issue.
"Live long and prosper," dear readers.