18 August 2011

I sold my car

In preparation for my move to Berlin (see previous post), I have sold my car.  I did this now, 3 months before I go, mainly because that was when my insurance came up for renewal. Rather spend the money to maintain, gas and insure my car for the next 3 months, I would just give it up, cold turkey.

Without further ado, here are the pros and cons of not having a car and living in north-central Toronto (also called North York):

More exercise
Will be able to spend more time reading blogs while waiting for subways and buses.*

It takes longer to get EVERYWHERE
More exercise**
Can't umpire anymore this summer
Must plan ahead more for trip taking
Have to plan more for weather

 Now, all that said, I have been car-less for 2 days.  Funny enough, I feel a sense of freedom.  I have not always had a car.  In my 2 years in Boston, I had my feet, the "T" (what they call the subway in Boston), and in my second year, my bike.  I didn't exactly have a problem there.  When I was in Europe last summer, I walked everywhere.  Or took public transit.  Or both.  So, I'm not as automobile dependent as some (like my parents) might think I am.  

Now, the area I live in is not the most conducive to traveling with public transportation, but it's actually not that bad.  While I'm nowhere near the downtown core, and the major streets are about 2km apart (they were set up as a grid, each one about a mile and quarter apart), it's not so bad.  I live in between the final 2 stops on this branch of the subway line. With heavy traffic, it can take just as long for me to get downtown driving as it would if I walked to the subway and took the train in.  

In fact, it takes about as long for me to walk to the subway or bus stops here as it did to get to the Yiddish Summer Weimar classes when I was in Weimar, Germany last summer.  The 20-minute walk into the centre of Weimar from the places that I was billeted was not exactly a hardship.  

So, to sum up, 2 days in, not so bad. I'll actually get my bike fixed when I get back from KlezKanada, and then I'll have a way of getting around even faster!

*Not sure if this is a pro or a con

**Long story but I sprained my ankle while running at the end of June (I WAS hoping to run the Toronto Waterfront Marathon this year....) and it hasn't healed well, thus the more exercise walking to and from the bus/subway will probably keep it from healing.


  1. You are right about getting more exercise when taking public transport. Advance planning of trips would definitely be a good idea to save you the inconvenience of making second trips for some errands. Dress comfortably. Also, don't forget to bring your coat just in case the weather gets too cold.

    Ivo Beutler

  2. How are you doing, Mankle? You know what? I was in Toronto last year for a vacation and may I say that there were surprisingly few car owners who resides there. Most of them are from Ottawa. It seems that wherever I look, bikes swarmed every roadway. Selling that car was actually a smart decision! But if ever you're wondering of having a car again, I would suggest you to have one that's hybrid.
    - Danille Folson