Thursday, February 6, 2014

Getting From A To B

If there is one constant in the human evolution equation, it's that we have always had to get somewhere. For something. Or someone. To get stuff done. Or to visit others whom we were secretly happy didn't live close. Used to be, in order to do so we walked everywhere.

Then somebody (there are no written records) figured there must be a better way to get around and set about devising ways of doing so. At first, a few stupid guys tried riding their wives around but found too often it ended with the women riding the men. (That idea was quickly abandoned.) Then, humans found horses, cows and donkeys (they tried sheep but they were generally much too short) and found them much more conducive to the task but discovered upon further experimentation that cows were pretty slow and donkeys too apt to take you where you didn't want to go, so over time the smart ones stuck mainly with horses which, once you both got over the bucking thing, worked pretty well.

Hemorrhoids, back problems, dignity issues surrounding the pouring of fine wines on a date ride and the problems associated with dragging huge sacks filled with goods on the ground behind them led people to invent the carriage – a device with wheels – to be pulled by horses. It was a successful transition. The horse union didn't complain because it meant better working conditions and getting the owners off their backs. So ingrained did this horse-driven custom become that once we started substituting combustion engines for the four-footed variety we still referred to the power generated as horsepower.

But the interesting thing is that over time, the progression from foot travel to horseback to being pulled by horses to zoom-zooming with horsepower, having no actual horses involved, has led to an another important thing. How we get where we're going and the journey involved has become as important as our destination.

We all know how words and phrases evolve over time. Don't be surprised if the word journey becomes more and more synonymous with quality of life. That while we have to get somewhere, the time it takes gives us the opportunity to share, learn and experience.

So there. I may have said something smart. Or not.

2 comments:

  1. You didn't even mention the compost problems with all those horses. I used to shovel it for $ so it will always be the downside of 4-legged transportation to me. I've always enjoyed car trips though :)

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