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Monday, March 30, 2009

Modes of traveling

Modes of traveling

People travel for various reasons – for business, pleasure and discovery; in different elements – land, water and air; and by divers methods, from walking to riding in train, ships and aeroplanes.

The simplest way of traveling by land is on Shank’s mare – that is, on foot. This is the only mode of travel for the poor man; but some who could afford to tour by train or motor car, prefer, when traveling for pleasure, to walk.

From the most ancient times men have trained animals, such as the camel, the elephant, the donkey, and especially the horse, to carry them, or to draw wheeled vehicles in which the could rest in comfort; and in the days before railways were introduced, most travelers rode on horseback, or in chariots, carts, carriages and coaches.

But in these days, mechanical carriages, steam – or petrol-driven, have largely taken the place of horse carriages. Even the poor can now travel quickly and comfortably in the railway trains, and the well-to-do tour allover the country in their motor-cars. The humble bicycle, too, is a great help to men of moderate means.

The boat, propelled by oars, and the sailing-ship are very old inventions, and most of the famous explorers made their discoveries in wooden sailing-vessels. But the sailing-ship has now been almost driven from the ocean by the great steamers, which enable travelers to accomplish sea voyages in weeks, which formerly took months, and even years.

And now in our own century man has conquered the air, and travel as the birds travel. The wonderful invention of the air-ship (or dirigible balloon) and the aeroplane will, when regular lines of air-craft are established, enable travelers to cover in days distances which take the fastest steamships weeks.

In all these modes of travel, men by their higher intelligence have harnessed the forces of nature, to carry them over the world – animal strength, wind, steam, gas and electricity.

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