Week 1 –
So I’m writing this from the perspective of a Floridian who has spent his most of his life living in Florida cities. Something I noticed this week while we’ve been out and about visiting different places on our itinerary is the prevalence of alternative methods of transportation. While efficient mass transit may exist in larger metropolitan cities like New York, Washington DC, Chicago and a few other places around the country, it isn’t something we’re used to seeing so much of here. Munich has above ground trains and underground trains, as well as, trams and buses all over the city streets. It has been so easy getting around, and with little delay. Additionally, since so many people rely on these methods of transport, shops, grocery markets, quick (or not so quick) dining options, and even stores like CVS or Walgreens are conveniently located in or adjacent to the subway, train, tram and bus stops. I imagine if I lived and worked in a place like this, I would quickly adapt to lifestyle changes that arise from living in heavily congested cities, with smaller living quarters, tight roads with lots of traffic and the need to efficiently get around town. It also helps reduce my carbon footprint on the world. This allows me to segue to something else I observed while we were traveling from Munich to Stuttgart and then again to Amsterdam. Alternative energy production is evident everywhere. Giant windmills were everywhere throughout the countryside as we made our way. Even useless pieces of land next to the interstate were utilized as solar farms. Germany is working to eliminate all nuclear power production and last year, renewable energy beat out coal as the countries primary source of electricity. While they still have work to do, I’m impressed!