We are on the verge of witnessing an unprecedented carnage. It is about to take place in Greece. No, I’m not referring to an economic collapse or military invasion. Apparently, the Greeks’ financial troubles are resulting in an upsurge in bicycling as an alternative form of transportation. Unless you’ve driven there, you have no idea that Greece is the world’s most dangerous country to be on any of its roadways, in a car, much less on a bicycle.
Yet, today’s Montreal Gazette reports on how the bike is getting ready to sweep Greece.
My cousin George, an expat Canadian working in Greece for the last 15 years or so, writes in his comments to an earlier post:
“After 13 years I’m amazed every day by what I see on the roads here. I’m not inured to it in the least; I’ve just learned to control my anger because, well, otherwise I’d be getting into physical fights daily. When I drive in Canada now, I feel like a shark among minnows, so sedate is the pace.
You get used to it, just like you get used to just about anything else. Once you understand the pulse of traffic you just kinda blend in. Yup, it’s much, much worse than even Montreal (which is already probably the worst big city in Canada for driving) but the upside is that driving pretty much anywhere else in the semi-civilized world after some time in Greece becomes a relaxing stroll in the park Heck, even Italy was a paragon of civility after Thessaloniki.
The first time we drove in Canada, my wife turned to me after a while and said, ‘how do people even manage to get into accidents here ?'”