perks of living in london

6 Sep

london 8.50am 20.7C cloudy tuesday 2016

living in london has its perks.

i read yesterday in the evening standard that from monday, bus users will be able to change buses free if it is within an hour of their first ride. ie their ticket is valid for 1hr on any bus. and they expect it to apply to tube rides in 2018.

it might benefit those who take short journeys , say to the supermarket or shops. they can do everything within an hour and so spend only £1.50 for the return trip which normally would have cost £3. quite a good saving if u are going on a supermarket shopping. it means the one way fare is 75p. that brings it back to the old days when a single fare for a short journey is 65p. before they change that to any length of journey costs the same with a fare of 90p, which gradually rose to £1.50 now. it wont work if it is a long journey as it leaves u very little time to do your shopping. and it wont work if u have to take two buses to get there. you can get there using one ticket, but u wont be able to use it again for the return journey. 

the example about supermarket shopping is really a valid one, because u will be coming back with heavy shopping, for which u need a wheeled shopping bag, and that is not easy to carry if u ride a bike.( i have thought of tying it to the back of my bike, long ago when i was riding my bike everywhere; but i never did do it. and it sure was awkward to balance two heavy shopping bags of stuff on the handle bars , or to strap them onto the back carriage behind my seat. my bike dont have a carrier basket in the front).

of course all this applies if u are under 60yrs old, because if u are over 60 here in london u get a free oyster card that allows u unlimited free travel on buses and tubes and trams, and trains within the 8 zones. and that is another perk, because you cannot get that if u live outside london. you have to wait till you are 66, or 67yrs old to get the freedom pass which is free bus travel for those old people who live in the rest of england and wales and that of course includes london. so when u reach that age u have to exchange that free oyster card for a freedom pass and then u can use any buses anywhere in england and wales for free. ( somebody else pays for it, and that is your council, where u live). of course the cost is spread much wider than that. those who pay are those who have lost council services which are scrapped due to lack of funds because council have to pay this extra cost on their budget.

life is like that. what benefits one group, means another group or the whole group have to pay for it. but maybe it is also what separates us from animals. we can see some groups need to be subsidised, or given more help. those that we see are vulnerable. and so the whole group pays for providing that. or in case of services, like roads, public transport, we see they need to be paid for and some parts of it subsidised, whilst other parts are charged more than their cost.

who pays for it and who benefits, that is the one that needs balance. and we are still at odds about that. 

there are lots of other things that is nice about living in uk, or in london in particular. not everyone will agree with my selection. for eg, i have heard in france that if u dont greet the shop assistant when u first enter the shop u will be considered rude, and offend the assistant. but here in uk, no one bothers to greet anyone… neither the assistant nor the customer. and no one expects it and so no one feels offended. i like that. 

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