It’s not controversial to say that Torontonians drive a lot. In fact, we have some of the longest commute times of any North American city. But let’s take a step back for a minute. When we talk about commuting, we’re talking about the drive we have to take to get to work on time. What about the drives we don’t have to take? What about that trip to get that one thing we need in the moment, a trip to a friend’s house or a trip for its own sake?
When time Is not of the essence or the drive is so quick it almost feels like a hassle to get in the car, why not consider a more human way of getting from A to B. Why not consider walking? Just off the top of my head I can think of a few good reasons to walk instead of drive, and that’s just what this article going to be about.
Here are 4 reasons you should walk more in Toronto
When in a vehicle, you’re either driving and focused on what’s going on the road or you’re looking at what the other cars are doing and what pedestrians are doing. You’ve got things to think about beyond the journey and those things are actually stressful. Whether or not you hit somebody, or something is a serious matter. When you’re walking however, you don’t have to worry about as much and so your free to take in your surroundings.
Take in Your Surroundings
I am a big walker. I’m the kind of guy who can spend hours walking without any place to go. I think the biggest reason I love the hobby is that I get to see things that I don’t think I’d really get to notice in a car or even a bus. That may not seem like the most efficient way to get someone where but there’s more to life than efficiency. Is it so crazy to say that the joy really is in the journey? When I’m walking, I find I take more notice of the buildings around me, their style, their relationship with nature, their history and the taste of the people living there. That time to think connects me with my surroundings. Not only does it does make me feel like I’m really a part of where I am, but I makes me feel like I’m a part of history and a part of a project. Things get built for a reason and walking by them instead of speeding past them gives me time to think about that reason.
Run into a Friend
Another reason I enjoy walking is that I never know who I’m going to run into. People like to say that people in big cities aren’t friendly but If you just take time to exist outside your room and office, I think you’ll start to notice a change. Walking around my neighbourhood for as long as I have has meant that I inevitably start to run in to people I’ve seen before. I’ll say hello and they’ll say hello back. It’s a small thing but it helps remind me that I’m not some kind of atom bouncing around in a vacuum; I’m a person that’s a part of a community. Frankly, it’s one of those little things that add up to something big. During covid, just being able to recognize a familiar face definitely helped with the quarantine cabin fever. Walking is a social activity, and couldn’t we all use a little more social activity?
The Environment & Personal Health
There are definitely more reasons to walk when you don’t have to drive. Environmental and health reasons come to mind but people are less likely to read long articles so I figured I’d just give the reasons that I thought would be hits.