Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Monrovia: City of Curbs

It's no secret that it's hard to find affordable housing in Southern California. What's not talked about so much is that it's even harder to find "housing" for your vehicle. Many apartments will grant a single parking space to their tenants, but in these days when both spouses must work to make ends meet, most families have more than one car. What becomes of those "extra" cars? Well, the answer is, of course, obvious. They park on the street!

One thing that's proven especially awkward in Monrovia, where I currently live, is that the curbs are so high! You cannot open the door on the curb side, because the door smashes right into the curb. This may seem obvious to many of you with similarly high curbs, but it's not what I'm used to. I'm used to short curbs, just high enough to keep the car from driving onto the sidewalk so long as the driver is being responsible. Curbs that you can be right up next to, yet still open your passenger side door so that another family member might ride with you to the store.

My wife (being the passenger most likely to be in my vehicle) actually has to contend with this reality more than I do, as when we go somewhere for dinner, or arrive at our "patch of curb" near our apartment upon coming home, she finds that she cannot get out of the car! I then have to pull the car out to the side just far enough to allow her to exit, while still avoiding driving out into the path of oncoming traffic! It's a bit unnerving. This is a problem in Pasadena, too, but not in almost any other place in the Southern California area in which we're likely to travel.

Does anyone else have this problem?

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