Kiss and Ride
Every time I see the sign： “kiss-and-ride”at the metro station， I feel quite warm and human. At first， I thought it was a place for kissers as I was told westerners are open to kissing in public. Well， my guess was close but not entirely accurate.
In America， many railway stations， bus terminals and airports feature an area in which cars can discharge and pick up passengers. It is not uncommon that a passenger is driven to the station by a spouse， partner or parent. And they kiss each other goodbye before the passenger catches the train. In some areas， you may see a road sign saying “K+R” or “K&R”for short.
There are more people living on the outskirts of a city. They are encouraged to travel to the city by public transport， like by bus or metro. And， as a result， suburbanites[郊区居民] usually drive to the car parks at the metro station and connect to the metro. You will also see signs for “parkand-ride” around the metro station. Different from the “kiss-and-ride” facilities where cars are allowed to stop temporarily， the vehicle is left in the car park or garage at the “park-andride” area during the day and retrieved[重新得到] when the owner returns. Some “park-and-ride”facilities are free of charge， while some others require a parking fee. Of course， “park-andride” is abbreviated as “P+R” or “P&R” in some areas.
“Kiss and Ride” is not only limited to America. In fact， many countries and regions have also adopted the idea， such as Italy， the Czech Republic and others. Even at some high-speed railway stations in Taiwan， you will find signs outside stations reading “Kiss and Ride” in English， with Chinese characters above the words that read “temporary pickup and drop-off zone”. I bet there wont be many Taiwanese who understand what the colloquialism[俗話，白话，口语] in English means.
Whether you use P+R or K+R facilities， you have certainly made a good choice to use public transport. In fact， I think instead of encouraging urbanites[都市人] to drive in Chinese cities， people should consider commuting by bus or metro. The severe traffic jams in big Chinese cities are notoriously known around the world. And yet， China has one of the largest networks of public transport in the world. As for me， as a commuter to Washington， I benefit from avoiding a stressful drive along congested[拥挤的] roads every day by taking the metro and bus.