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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 09-27-07, 12:41 AM   #1
CagerTools
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Davis is a joke, no offense. I'm going to Venice, Italy on Monday

Yeah, I'm going to Venice

This Monday. Lol... you guys can all live vicariously through me as I get to experience what real car-free living is about.

If I can't find what I'm looking for in Venice...then... well... I will go hang myself. No really though, I'll probably just realize I just want to be in the middle of nature without any cities.

Anyways, Davis...

is a joke.

I'm sorry... but who are these American League of Bicyclists anyways????

Its really sad actually. The car is dominant in Davis. You can feel it in the attitudes of drivers. I have to say the vibe I'm getting is that Davis is getting overtaken by the car culture.... and I don't think the city is doing enough to try to stop it.

Downtown is sad. Like someone said on my other thread... there are tons of cars... just going slower...sometimes not. But its annoying. Totally RUINS any feel of common place... The car literally breaks anything good about a downtown social center. Its crazy. 1 person... takes up so much space in his car. Blocks off pedestrians from walking around...

I'm speaking to the choir (or whatever the saying is)

Its just a joke. It took me coming to Davis to realize that the "platinum" rating Davis gets by the American League of Bicyclists (or whatever the exact name of the organization is)... is ridiculous. If Davis is platinum, then the rest of America is just SCREWED. which...it is.

I personally think Manhatten is a better place to live for pedestrians then Davis.

It seems the more people who take public transportation, or just walk places... the better. The more people not driving, the more power pedestrians have.

I'm really tired of American culture. Its so sad. Someone dragged me to see the movie SuperBad... and I literally realized how stupid Americans are if they actually like that movie. That movie literally solidified in my mind how I need to leave America.

Is it just me or is America turning into a horrible country. I feel like people from other places in the world are just smarter and more enlightened. Not everyone obviously. Seems many people on this car-free board are intelligent. But look at the rest of the masses of the USA. I don't even need to say anything.
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Old 09-27-07, 07:09 AM   #2
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If this link works...

http://www.i-ce.info/html/i-ce/home.htm

...there is a reference on the left frame about a Cycling Friendly Cities video on youtube. It appears that Denmark, Amsterdam, and Bogota could be interesting places. I was in the Netherlands about 25 years ago and even then it seemed like everyone spoke English. You might want to drop in for a visit.
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Old 09-27-07, 07:30 AM   #3
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might want to head to some other italian towns. venice is full of tourists... (although maybe not at this time of year)

we really liked florence. lots of cars on the periphery - but the core is closed to them most of the day.
lots of bikes in italy for sure - but lots of scooters and cars in florence and rome.

you might head further north to amdam or copenhagen, etc. they were on my list for this fall - but it looks like spring before we can go.

have fun.
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Old 09-27-07, 08:00 AM   #4
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Venice is a beautiful place, one where I would visit again and again, but it is also one of those tourist areas where entrepreneurs specializing in picking pockets flourish. Have a great time there but keep a hold of your wallet.
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Old 09-27-07, 08:00 AM   #5
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Wherever you go, there you are.
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Old 09-27-07, 11:22 AM   #6
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The core of Venice is also very bicycle unfriendly. Besides the canals, all there is is curvy, uneven sidewalks. It was made for pedestrians in the time of Leonardo Da Vinci. What would you expect?

Good luck. Hope you find what you are looking for.

Last edited by Artkansas; 09-27-07 at 01:42 PM.
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Old 09-27-07, 11:59 AM   #7
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Yeah, I'm going to Venice

<Snip>

I'm really tired of American culture. Its so sad. Someone dragged me to see the movie SuperBad... and I literally realized how stupid Americans are if they actually like that movie. That movie literally solidified in my mind how I need to leave America.

Is it just me or is America turning into a horrible country. I feel like people from other places in the world are just smarter and more enlightened. Not everyone obviously. Seems many people on this car-free board are intelligent. But look at the rest of the masses of the USA. I don't even need to say anything.
Don't forget to burn your passport after leaving this horrible country.
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Old 09-27-07, 12:30 PM   #8
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Of course the main mode of transit in Venice is motorboats, with ICEs that manage to pollute both the air and the water. They're noisier and stinkier than any cars.

But maybe I'm just jealous. I've never been to Venice, but it looks like a beautiful city. I read that their population has plummeted in recent years, but i don't remember why.
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Old 09-27-07, 12:36 PM   #9
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...their population has plummeted in recent years, but i don't remember why.
Maybe they couldn't swim...
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Old 09-27-07, 12:37 PM   #10
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Thanks for telling it like it is CagerTools! I say it and think it everyday, but eventually get too tired to fight anymore (after being cut off by a minivan, yelled at, tail-gated, etc...).

If ignorance was bliss, the US would be in nirvana. If you do find a wonderful bike & pedestrian friendly city, DON'T tell anyone because they'll just ***** it up!!!!!!!!! Keep it to yourself.

Hoping to become an expatriate in ten or so years.
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Old 09-27-07, 01:57 PM   #11
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Hoping to become an expatriate in ten or so years.
Whatcha waitin' for? Nirvana is calling from the Green Grasslands.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:01 PM   #12
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Every place in the world has its own strengths and weaknesses. You've noticed this in Davis and you'll experience it again in Venice. The move to Davis kept you in the same country and the same state as I recall. Moving to Venice will put you in another land, with language barriers and cultural barriers to overcome. It might be a great move, but it could also prove difficult. Please, for your own sake, think carefully before you make a move of this magnitude.

In quite a lot of your previous posts, you've talked about noise pollution and the difficulties you've had with the noises around you. Please see a doctor. You might have a medical condition which is affecting you in this way. You need to see if that is the problem before you contemplate another move.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:01 PM   #13
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Whatcha waitin' for? Nirvana is calling from the Green Grasslands.
So lets all move to Burlington, Iowa.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:14 PM   #14
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Its funny how all you guys would be so outraged if bikes were banned from any street and yet you want cars banned from entire sections of town.

North Korea might be a good place to move to.

ITs hard to buy a car when you are starving to death.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:26 PM   #15
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A significant part of the tourist/historical section of Guanajuato city in Mexico is car free. It's an old silver mining town and much of the downtown traffic has been diverted into tunnels. However, the church bells will wake you in the morning and the roving bands of musicians will keep you up late at night.
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Old 09-27-07, 02:29 PM   #16
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Its funny how all you guys would be so outraged if bikes were banned from any street and yet you want cars banned from entire sections of town.

All???? I believe there is a big range of opinions here that you are not accounting for, including your own.

And bikes are banned from many streets in most cities. They're called freeways.

Or interstates or thruways, you know multi-lane, limited access. And yes, I'm aware that in some places a bicycle may ride on the multi-lane, limited access highway, but as a rule, they are banned.

Last edited by Artkansas; 09-27-07 at 02:41 PM. Reason: More info
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Old 09-27-07, 02:37 PM   #17
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Ive never lived in a city large enough to have freeways.

Around here the only place bikes are banned is on the interstate.
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Old 09-27-07, 05:38 PM   #18
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So lets all move to Burlington, Iowa.
Iowa?

Burlington, VT is pretty nice. But I'm biased.
I do want to visit Iowa though, just to see if ILTB is as grumpy in person as he is on the web. (but we might find out he's a dog, or a 14 yo girl...! )
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Old 09-27-07, 09:35 PM   #19
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Someone told me Venice smells. The water does not move and all those open canals have a horrendous odor. Oh, don't forget to bring your wallet because prices are high as everything must be imported by water.

As for Davis, I agree that Manhattan is more ped friendly due to the wide sidewalks. Bicycling is another story.
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Old 09-27-07, 10:42 PM   #20
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@ the OP: I'm not trying to provoke, but I find that people "fed up" with American culture typically haven't traveled out of the states too much. Once you've traveled around, I think you'll find that things really aren't so bad stateside. But if you really hate cars so much, why don't you just take the plunge and go to Amsterdam already?

Also, be prepared to spend a lot of money, and get relatively little for it. Britian, France, and Germany all proved themselves to be rather expensive when I was there this summer, and for someone actually intending to live there, well, good luck.
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Old 09-27-07, 10:58 PM   #21
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Wow Cager, how did you come up with the big bucks to move to Europe? The dollar is worth nothing next to the Euro, can't imagine living or visiting in western Europe, especially a tourist trap like Venice, without some really fat bank accounts readily accessible by ATMs.

Too bad you didn't take up my suggestion to take a visit just 90 miles north of Davis to check out the wonderful town of Chico.

If you get tired of hanging around the Venice tourist trap (you will) and you have any money left, there are lots of other bike friendlier places in Europe. Many are not the famous places you have mentioned. Lesser known places like Muenster, Germany (northwest of Cologne) where nearly half the population uses a bike for some of their daily transportation. Many cities in the eastern states of Germany are also very bike friendly, like Berlin or Leipzig (my personal fav). Relatively flat in those places so even a 1 or 3 speed rental bike that you can get at the train station will do the job.
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Old 09-28-07, 07:05 AM   #22
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I've have lived overseas for eight years and have visited over 15 different countries and loved every minute of it but every country has its own pluses and minuses. Italy is a great country and Venice is beautiful but there are better bike friendly places to live. It takes some getting used to the way Italians drive and most streets are narrow with little or no shoulders. They drive fast and balls to the walls.

I would consider Germany, Belgium or the Netherlands. In my opinion much more bike friendly.

Also, I don't know your financial situation but it might be difficult if you plan on working in Europe. Your visa might not allow you to work. You must also consider the cost of living. It is much more expensive there and you will pay higher taxes.

Either way, good luck and enjoy yourself. I would move back to Europe in a heartbeat
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Old 09-28-07, 07:56 AM   #23
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...
I would consider Germany, Belgium or the Netherlands. In my opinion much more bike friendly.
...
+1
If it weren't for all the tobacco smoke, I think I'd move to the Netherlands, or maybe Germany. I haven't been to Venice, so I can't compare them.
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Old 09-28-07, 08:57 AM   #24
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Yeah, I'm going to Venice

This Monday. Lol... you guys can all live vicariously through me as I get to experience what real car-free living is about.
You realize Venice is bike free too, right? I was there just a couple weeks ago. Not. a single. bike. Five Diesel stores, one Disney Store, and enough high fashion more-money-than-sense stores to make the place feel more like a mall than a city of History. If you're into that.

Hate to break it to you, but Venice ain't your magic bullet.
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Old 09-28-07, 11:43 AM   #25
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I personally think Manhatten is a better place to live for pedestrians then Davis.
Manhattan is the most pedestrian friendly place in the U.S. and more pedestrian friendly than most places outside the U.S. (e.g. London). OTOH the pedestrians aren't always that friendly. They can be really quite aggressive (don't get in their way). Manhattan is also the most expensive place to live in the U.S. and one of the noisiest.

Its actually not that bad to drive in either provided you have deep pockets, parking one car can cost $400 to $1000 a month.
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