Daddy Cool

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Donnersbergerbrücke, Munich

Car advertisements still play on the more spinal cord level, it seems. As they are so successful – most Germans are tremendously car-conscious – they do indeed hit the right spot.

Myself, I was heading for the train to a meeting in Bonn at 06:19 in the morning. City administration’s rules are strict: No national flights if there is any possibility of a train connection, except in rare, unavoidable cases. Yes, we do have a CO2 reduction programme, and we take it serious.


  1. What a wonderful way of keeping mass transit viable! The added bonus of Co2 reduction makes it a win-win situation. If only we did that here in the US…..sigh.

    I love cars and would like to have the choice in small yet roomy and economical cars that you have there. Every year we rent a small 4-door diesel car in Provence and love it. Fun to drive, incredibly roomy and so thrifty with gas…double sigh.

    1. James, the point is that Germany suffers since a long time from very high fuel prices, at least compared to the U.S. Without almost any national oil occurrence, the oil crisis of the last century hit us very hard, and so people got accustomed to the idea of economic cars. But of course this limits freedom, at least in the view of dyed-in-the-wool car lobbyists here.

  2. Yes, and even if the flight might be cheaper … 😉 … and not to count the hours that you might be loosing … of work, that is to be done nevertheless … okay, in short: same here.

    And thanks for the earworm btw ….

    1. Well, at least in many cases flights are only cheaper, not truly faster when taking shuttle time to/from the airport into account. And in the ICE trains you sit more comfortable than in many of the cheap airlines (at least most of the time). And, wonder over wonder, both legs of my trip the train was on time – unfortunately not so when traveling home afterwards….

  3. That’s an interesting plan. I couldn’t see it happening here in the U.S. Even if we had a mass transit infrastructure worth anything. People would lose their minds, saying that they have the “right” to travel any way that they wanted to. Also, if it were ‘national’, it could take quite a while to get from Maine to California, some 3, 400 miles, or about 5,500 KM. 🙂

    There have been many times when I wished that I could travel somewhere by train, but AmTrak is extremely limited and the connections are ridiculous, making travel extremely long and more expensive than flights.

    1. Paul, this certainly is blessing and curse of a small, densely populated country (with good infrastructure): you can reach most places with public transport, and sometimes you have to, as other means of transport don’t make sense. Over here quite often shuttle time to and from the airport is longer than time in the air even for the longest national distance. And traveling by car is not necessarily faster, especially between big cities, even outside the rush hour.

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