Sunday, January 4, 2009


We, from the United States, has always considered the automobile to be a sort of birthright/necessity (people from NYC excluded.)  High schoolers spends thousands of dollars on jalopies and then thousands more on adding retarded 'upgrades.'  The type of car you drive is a status symbol.  People take more car of their cars than they do of their houses, jobs and families.
A car in Kraków.  I love the "Idaho" license plate.

Here, cars are extremely expensive.  A crappy Fiat that you wouldn't be caught dead in?  $30,000.  I've been told that it's mostly the taxes that jack up the price.  In fact, a BMW that's been made in Germany and shipped to the US for the US market is cheaper to buy and ship to Poland than a BMW that's been made and Germany and shipped to Poland for the Polish market.  (They love their BMWs here.  Love 'em.  German cars are the ultimate status symbol–they are the Ultimate Driving Machine, are they not?  American cars, not so much.)  Cars are treated a little more differently here too.  They're seen more of a tool than an object of leisure and fun.  High gas prices helps (it was around $8 a gallon in the summer.)  Remember those songs, "Riiiiiding along in my automobile / My baby beside me at the wheel."  and "We'll have fun, fun, fun, fun 'til her daddy takes her T-Bird away."?  Yeah, hopping in the car and just driving to nowhere will empty you wallet pretty quick.
People also wait longer to get their licenses (it also takes longer for them to get them as well.)  I mean, shit, I got mine when I was sixteen and lost it by the time I was seventeen (only for a month.)  True, most people I know come from the cities and there's not a huge need for cars there, but the restrictions in getting a license are a little more severe than when I was going for it.

No comments: