Who has ever hitchhiked before? I've tried hitchhiking before but no one has ever picked me up! It's not exactly a safe thing to do these days (especially in Southern California). I was just thinking about this because the other day I picked up a hitchhiker for the first time. I was a little nervous (considering it was late at night and a bunch of weirdos were out) but it was interesting... It would seem like a fun way to travel around a foreign country.
I've never hitchhike myself, but I pick up hitchhikers whenever I can... Some of the best conversations I've ever had with strangers were with folks I picked up on the side of the road!
This one guy, the first thing he told me was, "I just got out of jail." And I was like o.O I just picked up the wrong person! But he was very nice, he just didn't have money for a fine so he got jailed. He had a lot of good stories about his kids and we talked politics too.
But please if you need a ride home from jail -- don't tell the person who picks you up. Just lie and say your car broke down. Everyone will rest easier, I promise.
I hitchhiked a lot when I was younger. I hitchhiked all around Tasmania (Australia). I had a lot of great experiences doing it too. I also picked up a lot of hitchhikers after I got a car. I met some very interesting people.
Its not a fast way to get around. I had a few occasions where I didn't get picked up. Once I walked for 40km and got where I was going without being in a car at all. On the other hand, I once had a race with my brother, who took the bus, and beat him on a 100km trip.
I think its really sad that hitchhiking has become much less common. I'd like to live in a world where people help eachother out. I'd say that its now very much a fringe activity. I haven't hitchhiked for a while now but every now and then I do pick up a hitchhiker (as far as I can see there are no hitchhikers here in Japan). When I do pick up hitchhikers these days they seem a lot less mainstream. I haven't picked one up that made me regret it though.
You'll meet people you never would have met before.
I got picked up by the president of our local bank who told me the inside story of the first case of computerized bank fraud I'd ever heard of.
I was discharged from a tiny rural hospital in the middle of nowhere after a car crash with blood all over my shirt and a bloody bandage on my head. I expected to walk all the way home (80 km.) But at 2AM I got picked up by these two girls who were very, very stoned. I was still a bit nervy after the crash, but decided to take the ride even though I am sure there was an increased risk of another accident. I almost certainly wouldn't have got another ride. -Heard David Bowie - Cat People for the first time!
I got picked up by 3 very rough looking guys, dressed in all black who were returning from visiting their friend in prison. Honestly, they scared the hell out of me. I bought some beers at the next stop and we shared them and had a very nice time.
My brother got picked up by the first environmental politician I ever heard of. He went on to become premier of our state and head a national green political party.
davidfromoz: You have some interesting stories. I'm going to start picking up more hitchhikers when I see them (which isn't too often). The other day was the first time I've ever picked one up (although I have given strangers rides before, but it's always been because I've met them somewhere and then given them a ride).