Please join me in welcoming CarEnvy’s new Contributing Editor, David Little.
by David Little @dlittle21
My shoes sank into the soggy grass as I shifted my weight impatiently. An easterly wind pulled low, heavy clouds passed my peripheral gaze. But we wanted to go west.
Isabella (a Danish friend with whom I was visiting) and I were planted by the side of the highway exiting Copenhagen. To save some kroner and have an adventure, she suggested that we hitchhike the 303 km to Aarhus. I was skeptical. Back home, hitchhiking is seen as a very reckless undertaking. We Canadians will avert our eyes from the dusty, motherless roadside stranger as we drive on by, thankful for a distraction so that he can promptly be forgotten. In Denmark it’s different. Trying to dispel my incredulity, Isabella, along with her mother’s corroboration, assured me that autostoping is very common and often encouraged. Indeed, even drowsy children will extend a thumb if they happened to have missed the bus to morning classes!
So there we stood, taking 10 minute shifts to rest aching shoulders and sore thumb joints. It occurred to me, as I tried to catch the eyes of passing motorists, that this was a task of attraction and confidence. Like posturing for attention at a bar, I immediately became conscious of my appearance and demeanor: “well, how do I look? hood up or down? is my beard scary? would YOU pick me up?” With a weak sun low in the sky, I eventually settled on an affable, yet stoic squinting grin, backpack resting against my knees. In contrast, Isabella donned a demure smile, chin held high, hand on hip.+Continue Reading