January 17, 2009

Going Deep Vs. Going Wide

I do not travel all that much, but I recently completed a road trip to Branson, MO. I like road trips, I do prefer them to air travel as I have mentioned before. But as in any thing else there are trade offs.

Air travel lets you go wide. For me, either coast in the US in a little over 3 hours tops. Around the world in a couple of days. Go anywhere you want, unless people with guns will shoot at you if you try to land in their country. Barring that minor inconvenience, the world is yours. But you miss so much that is going on between your starting point and destination. Not much interaction with anyone at 30,000 feet other than your fellow plane mates. And the seats are cramped for a six plus footer like myself. Much more legroom in my car. But you can see cultures and countries different from where you live. (After six years, the novelty of the cultural shift from NY to Texas has worn off)

Road trips let you go deep. Stop when and where you want (OK not in the middle lane of a three lane highway). Check out things that interest you. But it takes time to do it. And things like water barriers or really big holes in the ground tend to slow you down quite a bit. But you can stop at a presidential library and spend the afternoon if you want. You cannot do that on a plane without a parachute and a way to evade the federal marshals who will be looking for you once you reach the ground. Pacific island getaways and European jaunts tend not to be feasible with an AAA itinerary. But there are no security gates, just toll gates to pass through. And
the TSA folks do not raise the bar if you throw some change at them.

There are probably personality quirks, or deep seated fears or phobias that would drive someone (or fly them) towards one choice over the other. Some nationalistic stirring or pride factor possibly. Someone should do a study.

So I like the road more than the air. But I am a little conflicted by that. What does that say about me? I dunno, but it says something. Someone really needs to look into this.

1 comment:

Rendell said...

life always have different kinds of road..