Monday, July 5, 2010

Sans Auto

Truth is this: I don't drive.

I am 19 years old.
I do not have a licence.

This seems to be a shock-factor when it comes to meeting folks these days. When I show up on a scooter and they try and figure out how I got there, it only takes those three words, "I don't drive," for a series of questions to bubble up.

There is the why and the how.

"Why don't you drive?"
Many reasons. Multiple reasons.

The origin is my trip to Switzerland. I didn't learn to drive when I was 15, my sophomore year, because my work load from school was brinking on more than I could handle. I was in full pre-IB classes and had no time to spare. The thought of taking on the task of learning to drive was overwhelming and not possible.

After my Sophomore year I would have learned but instead I had this choice:
Drive or go to Switzerland.

Switzerland won. Naturlich!

While abroad in Switzerland I learned to get around by velo/bike, foot, train, bus, and boat. Any destination in the country was within a few hours reach for me and I loved it. That tiny country held a multitude of possibilities of adventures for me and none required an automobile.

When I got back to America, I was so content with my no-driving habit that I failed to learn to drive. It was my senior year of high school and I simply did not hold the interest to learn.

I learned to drive on a road trip with my friend Alex on a manual. I liked it. Didn't drive much after.

Eventually I did get my permit to learn because the family I was going to au pair for in Switzerland wanted me to drive. I did not succeed in time but it worked out.

Now I'm back in America and still don't have a licence nor a need for one.

I don't exactly desire to have one. Driving is so expensive! Think of all the costs. Car payments. Gas. Insurance. Tickets. Parking. It's outrageous!

Regardless of what I choose, it's better for the environment and better for me. I don't need to join a fitness club when my lifestyle forces me to walk at least 3 miles a day.

I also love the opportunities that walking gives me. I get to meet people. Smile at other pedestrians. And I'm more likely to see a friend drive and vice versa. That's fun. It may take me a bit longer but I enjoy getting outside and breathing in the Seattle air.

How do you get around?
With ease.

I get around by scooter (Razor), foot, bike, bus, and carpool. Can't think of any other way...

Yes, it may take me three times longer to get there, but sometimes, it's the journey that counts more than the destination.

I will not deny that driving would make life easier at times, but I can't complain. This is a choice I've made for now and it keeps me content. When was the last time you rode it a scooter? When you get on one, you can't help but smile. So much fun! More fun than a car could give me at 5:30 in the morning.

So I'll continue to live sans auto for now.


  1. What a great outlook in life! Everyone is so rush, rush, rush... and in the meantime there you are enjoying life to the fullest - very cool.

  2. Hey, my husband didn't drive until he was 21 for a variety of reasons. It truly is overrated.

  3. What a lovely description of a non-driving life.

    Ok, so I'm 40 and have been driving for more years than I care to count and with my car in the shop this week I miss it. BUT, I have been enjoying walking and biking. Today I biked to the post office to mail off a swap, the library to pick up a book and then to Target to pick up a few groceries - all things I would normally not think twice about driving the car too. Now I'll think twice. ;)

    New follower from Swap-Bot.

  4. I'm 26 and don't drive. I don't know how to and have no real interest in learning. People are constantly shocked by this, because many can't picture life without a car.

    -MsRigby (via swap-bot)

  5. Holy swiveling pigs Batman...I think I'm in love. I'm 21 and I DON'T DRIVE EITHER!!! And so many people don't get it and ask the silly question: How'd you get here? Uh...duh. I have feet you know. And if I didn't I'm sure I'd have wheels, just not of the automobile variety.

    I heart you even more now. You don't need confetti you need sprinkles raining from the sky. Where were you when I was in Seattle?!?!

    Dani aka Doodlebabe (swap-bot)

  6. I am 20 and dont know how to drive either. It would be nice to have a car but I am just not interested in learning. Everyone is always shocked that I am almost 21 and dont know how to drive since its almost impossible to get around this town without a car but I manage :)

    Maybe one day i'll get my license but I am in no rush.


Your words make me grin.

Related Posts with Thumbnails