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Turning Over a New Leaf

Posted on March 9, 2009 by under Travel.    

I may be turning over a new leaf. Being here in Germany, I have no choice but to walk to every thing that I want to do. The first few days I was really dreading it. I would get up, get ready for work then think to myself, “God I need a car”. Now a little over a week later, I am not really minding it. You also have to remember that on top of the walk every morning I have been carrying a back pack full of about 30 lbs of computer equipment in it.

I think when I get back, I am going to start walking around my neighborhood. Then maybe branch out and walk a little farther every day. Maybe I can get the wife into it and who knows, it may spark something in both of us to venture to exercise further. I am just worried that I will go home find the joys of driving and slip back into my old ways. There is not really that much to see around home like there is here and the walkways are designed more for exercise and not for pedestrian travel to and from specific points. In Germany, the walk ways are wide enough for all pedestrians to move and are close to the stores, the streets are wide enough for 2 lanes of traffic and because they are so narrow, it makes it easy to cross traffic. Unlike in America where you have to cross multiple lanes of traffic and worry if the people on the street are actually going to stop for you or run you down. That is one thing that I will miss. The convince of everything. If we had towns like this in the states, I would move there in a heart beat.

I noticed that the only cars that you see on the road are for delivery, or they are coming into the town or leaving the town. Other than that, everyone walks everywhere. In the states, everything is so spread out. We have to drive to every location. Its no wonder we have pollution levels off the charts and we are struggling to keep gas flowing in our country.

There is also a sense of trust among everyone. I noticed that no one pushes in line, no one is concerned about someone stealing something from them while walking down the street, no one is mean and hateful to others because they are different or odd. Now this may be isolated to just this town, but I would loike to think that it spans farther than just here. Visiting the Turkish place so much I have learned that a lot of people visit this place. They are always pleasant, always accommodating and the people that come in are varied. Just last night I was standing in the store and there were two Japanese Business men in there, Myself, a handful of Turkish folks and a sprinkling of Germans. I think there might have been a few middle eastern in there as well all crammed into a store a little larger than a standard US kitchen. An not a single bit if hatred in the entire place. In America, some racist redneck would have started a riot within the first 10 minutes guaranteed. That’s if they weren’t trying to fire bomb the store on a daily basis. There are some aspects of America that I hate. But all-in-all, i miss home.

Only a few days left then I am on my return flight and back to my family and friends. Hopefully I can take some of the cultural things that i have learned and bring them back home with me. I hear it all the time, “It only takes one person to change the world”. Maybe that person is me.

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  • Replies to "Turning Over a New Leaf"

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    Ching  on March 9, 2009

    It’s funny that you brought up walking. I was actually thinking about this myself. I was thinking that you and I should walk everyday after we get home from work.

    I had initially thought of walking to the nature park on 29th street one day and then WSU the next and then just alternating destinations each day so that we don’t get bored. It’s funny how in tune we are with each other. It’s almost like our thoughts are telepathic.

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