helen-louise (baratron) wrote,

in which h-l is a hippy

Every time I visit North America, I get reminded how impractical European ideas about slowing down global warming are. We think the North Americans should just stop using their cars to drive everywhere, and forget how spread out North American cities are. Because they are not short of space, things there are far, far more spread out than at home. For example, the strip mall - a collection of five or six shops in a single-storey, flat building with a huge amount of parking at the front - that simply does not exist in Europe, as we don't have the room. I made rmjwell fall over laughing when I admitted at alt.polycon 11 that I'd thought a strip mall was a place you went to see strippers.

What really brought this home to me was going to the drive-in with futabachan & Amanda. This North American custom does not exist in the UK, or in any part of Europe I've visited. Of course we have cinemas, but never outdoor ones, except occasionally during summer music festivals. It was cool to be there, but weird - it seemed very wasteful to have each individual car blasting its own sound system rather than the cinema using a single one. And drivers were advised to switch on their cars occasionally to prevent their batteries running out. Because electricity generated by non-hybrid cars' petrol engines is so energy-efficient...

Anyway, the movie, Ratatouille, was cool. And seeing it in Canada means that I can go home & see it with Richard, and thus fulfill my desire to see a Pixar film twice within a few weeks. (I always come out & want to see the film again). Nonetheless, it was a surreal experience for me.
Tags: canada, films, hippyism, north america, thoughts, travel

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