I HAVE LASTED TWO AND A HALF MONTHS IN AUCKLAND WITHOUT PURCHASING A CAR.
That, my friends, is a freaking miracle. Oh don’t worry, by no means have we been car-free:
- We have had minor lapses involving a rental car for a week (apartment hunting);
- We had a courtesy car for a week while we moved (we thought we bought a car but it was a total puppy, had the courtesy car while the dealer *tried* to fix it); and
- We borrowed a car for a wedding and a visit to the burbs.
Now, you might say: “But A, many many people live in urban centres and rely exclusively on public transport. In fact, that’s how you got around for the last three and a half years”. Why yes, dear reader, that is in fact the case. But if you have a passing acquaintance with Auckland, you will be familiar with the following list of unresearched, unreferenced ‘facts’:
- Auckland’s public transport network sucks.
- Because of our home-ownership fetish, Auckland has a fairly low population density over a broad area. It is also geographically odd, being an isthmus of land between two harbours and hence is difficult to get around.
- Kiwis are notoriously tight and massively resent expenditure on infrastructure.
- We think that we’re all clean and green and what not anyway so what does a few k’s on the odometer matter?*
All of the above generally = need for a car. Total chicken and egg sitch, I realise that. If we had fewer cars and used public transport more, there would be a greater govt spend on public transport. So P and I are currently doing our part. This consists of taking the bus when we go to see his family and didn’t want to drink drive anyway. I KNOW. We’re so SELFLESS.
PLUS we cannot agree on the right fucking car to buy. I am tight (see point 3 above) so the budget is not all P dreamed it would be. Also, I refuse to drive anything that makes me look like a moron and P look like a douchebag. (I hate that insult but in this context it just seems so…right). I consider anything with dumb-ass spoilers over 30 centimetres high to be douchebaggy so I don’t think I’ve been too demanding but P has a veritable blindspot when it comes to boy-racer vehicles. But honestly, when have you ever seen a 30 year old white woman in a 2 door car with a spoiler and a growly engine and thought “SHE’S SO COOL” or even just not thought “SHE’S A DICKWAD”? Riddle me this, readers.
|I WOULD LOOK LIKE A WALLY DRIVING THIS. FACT.|
Apparently it is also lame that I’ve cut out convertibles (MY HAIR people, MY HAIR). And that I don’t want anything vintage (it’s all very well for hipsters but I’m not driving anything that might fall apart on me. I still can’t change a tyre ffs, not for want of teaching by my parents either. NOT a feminist issue let me be clear, more of a hopeless issue). So we'll remain vehicle-less for a while longer, I predict.
*I totally cannot be smug about carbon footprints this year though (*ahem* 30 something flights in 2012….).