#sol September 13, 2016
Yesterday I had the day off (yes, another holiday in Malaysia), so I scurried off to pick up some groceries. When deciding where to live two years ago I planned to be car free. I had just come from years in Berlin, where not having a car was easy as the public transport was so excellent. Coming here everyone insisted, “You’ll change your mind.” “It’s impossible to live without a car in KL.” Truthfully the thought of me driving on the other side of the road with all of the traffic jams here and motorcyclists dashing aboout helped make me decide that me not driving was better for my sanity and everyone else’s safety. After being in the city for a few days and seeing the frequent traffic woes I knew that driving in that traffic would stress me out too much!
I decided I would live near public transport and amenities I wanted. I chose my apartment because it was not right in the heart of the city, but was still close by. There is a bus stop right out front and a light rail line stop within walking distance. Without traffic, it would be only a 15-minute drive to school (taxis are cheap and plentiful, so that would be my car choice when public transport was not possible). It was also right next to a small mall with a grocery store, Starbucks, a hair dresser and more- the fact that several of my colleagues were also going to live there was a bit of a bonus too. There was a small wooded lot between the apartment and the mall, so in spite of being on a busy road, it seemed quiet enough.
Flash forward- they are building an overpass right between my building and the mall. It will ease the crazy traffic there (maybe), but in the meantime it is a big construction site. I love being able to walk to get things done, but yesterday was hard.
According to the information in my apartment building this project has another two years to go. I am hopeful that they will keep in mind that there are many of us in the neighborhood who walk to and from the mall, but here pedestrians are not so common, so I am afraid it may get worse before it gets better.
I like where I live and am not likely to make a move, but yesterday made it hard to believe that living next door to the grocery store did not necessarily mean that i could run out to the store on a whim. My car free plan is still in place, but…