Wednesday, August 25, 2010

cardriver turned busrider once more

let me let you in on a not-quite-a-secret: i love commuting, as long as commuting is an option and i can take the car when i want.

complicated? here's the long-ish explanation that i hope will make sense:

growing up, i couldn't really understand why my mom would sometimes opt to commute rather than take the car to work. she'd drive and park at a certain undisclosed location, then take the jeepney all the way to laguna. it isn't safe at all, some of her friends reminded her.

me -- i resented not being able to use the car, even more so when my mom and dad first went to the US and i was living in las pinas and commuting to ortigas on a daily basis. there were two serviceable cars in the garage, and there i was, in my teacher outfit, daring myself to go out in the pouring rain. i think more than once i almost cried at the thought that the cars were drier that i was.

and so what if i couldn't drive yet. IMHO, the reason why i couldn't drive was the fact that i didn't have any vehicle to practice on.

then my mom went home, and then she migrated to the US for real and she had no choice but to distribute the cars to her kids: one for my brother, and one for myself. and since i had to get an operation which basically left me unable to get around in jeepneys and buses, i had to learn how to drive real fast.

and you know what, i did. of course that didn't happen without a bazillion mishaps taking place, but i didn't care. a car is a thing. a thing can be replaced and/or fixed. freedom -- the kind that comes with a vehicle -- is priceless.

so i drove -- to the shopping center (from my dorm 300 meters away, but so what?), to law school, then eventually to work, then one magnificent moment -- from UP to BF. after that, sky's the limit. i had me and my car, and we were going places.

and when spike arrived, that meant more freedom -- spike was tiny, can be parked easily, and zoomed (as quickly as a 1.3 can) around the city. spike went to tagaytay. spike went to cabanatuan. spike went to subic. spike went where i wanted to go. i may have had boyfriends then, but spike, spike was (and is) my one true love.

then gas prices increased. and spike had to learn how to stay at home. or, since taking a trike was expensive, spike had to be parked in the exact undisclosed location where my mom used to park her car.

they say an apple doesn't fall far from the tree. in this particular case, as much as it pains me to admit, yes, i am very much like my own mother.

but then as i am the one who pays for insurance, regular maintenance, gasoline, and all other incidental car expenses, i finally understood the charm that comes from having a car and then not using it. when i wake up each morning, i'm faced with a dilemma -- do i take the car or not? if i'm late, i definitely take it. if i'm not, i sometimes don't. if i'm sleepy or particularly broke, i commute. and if i'm feeling rich or the skies are dark, then i take spike. i realized that freedom didn't come from car ownership; freedom came from having the choice as to what to do with the car.

so, while i still am a cardriver, i regularly dabble with being a busrider once in a while. try it ... it could be fun.

2 said hello!:

commuter said...

Haha! I'll link this to my blog! May I?

roxy said...

of course :)

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