If anyone anywhere believes that the strangest creature on this small green planet is not the human, then I am sorry to have to tell them that they’re very naive! There is no doubt in my mind that the world would be a very dull place if people weren’t so strange, and a lot of news media would have nothing to fill their pages with. If it isn’t producing a snowball to prove that climate change isn’t happening – for those still convinced that it is global warming and not a complete change in climate – then it is those in my area, as an example, who believe they are doing the right thing, but cannot see the wood for trees.
Reading through the local news in this large farming community, I came across a very interesting proposition by local businesses and politicians for a change to the transport facilities into town. Interesting because it is very limited, but also because it makes no sense whatsoever.
Photo Source: Prayltno – Creative Commons
The idea is to have a special bus drive through all the local villages and collect people to bring them in to town. This service would be limited to once a week when the Farmer’s Market is underway, bringing people to and from the market. It is designed to ease traffic congestion, and increase the popularity of the Farmer’s Market.
On the good side, yes it would ease things for some people, especially during the school vacation. Most of the buses which run through these villages are there to bring children to and from school. They don’t run at all in the vacation periods, since there is no demand and the local authorities in Nienburg, who pay many of the bus fees, don’t want to pay for a service which isn’t going to be used. No service in the vacation means people have to use their own cars outside of school term and, despite the fact that there are over seven hundred free parking spaces here in town, this apparently leads to some congestion.
Now the downside. If people are transported in to town once a week, and that in the middle of the week, they are going to neglect the smaller local shops. There may be only a few of them in the surrounding villages, but they are a lifeline for many. The closure of community shopping facilities, all of which are family run, will cause even less social interaction amongst villagers who, there being few bars, tend only to meet up with one another when there is a shooting festival or some other annual activity in their immediate area.
This, of course, is not an argument which can be used when it comes to raising the income of the Farmer’s Market in town. The town is interested in getting more customers in, any way that they can, and the local businesses benefit from the extra attention they are bound to receive. For me the main argument why this is a bad idea is that this is a Farmer’s Market, and the town is in the center of a large and prosperous farming community. Why should local villagers be interested in traveling in to town to buy what they can get from their neighbors or their own farm?
Perhaps someone ought to throw that famous American snowball at a few of the planners here, and see if it melts from the heat of their planning abilities.
- Viktoria Michaelis.