You may think I've been sucking on helium-3, but just think about it:
Dirigibles use tiny amounts of fuel. A well-designed dirigible can go for 6,000 miles without stopping to refuel.
Dirigibles can carry incredibly heavy payloads. Dirigibles are currently being used on some desert construction sites to move payloads that the ground equipment cannot budge. Also, it takes no more fuel to carry more weight.
Dirigibles are much faster than you think. Okay, maybe not as fast as a truck driver strung out on uppers and Mountain Dew, but they can cruise at about 45 mph. The army has one that can do 80.
"What about hurricanes?" I hear you protest. Well, theoretically dirigibles could be safer in hurricane conditions than land vehicles because it would be really hard to get a flying dirigible into a hurricane, whereas a truck driver strung out on uppers and Mountain Dew might drive right into the storm before realizing that he's not hallucinating it.
"Don't dirigibles explode?" you may ask. Not when they're filled with helium. Also, they can take a surprising amount of damage without farting through the sky like an untied balloon.
All this is a vital part of my plans for the future. When I'm not scouring the post-apocalyptic aftermath in my armored dune buggy, I could be sailing high above the landscape in my dirigible wearing leather goggles and spying on the cannibals. Just try and shoot me! I'll fly above the range of your flintlock rifles and drop hand-made petrol bombs on you all.
I really only have a short list of needs from a town to make it livable. Here's my list:
Must be pedestrian friendly
Must have a good library
Must have good parks
Must have a collection of interesting creative people
Must have real coffeehouses
The town I'm living in right now doesn't have a single real coffeehouse. Let me tell you what I mean by a "real" coffeehouse. A real coffeehouse sells good coffee, has free wireless internet access and electrical sockets, doesn't blast loud music while you're trying to relax, and is open early to late.
The town I'm in has a Starbucks. They don't sell coffee. They do sell some kind of dark strong drink similar to coffee. I'm not sure, but it may be made from burnt rubber.
The town I'm in has several "Christian coffeehouses." I have no problem with Christians, but they need to stay out of the coffee business. They charge people for silly little things like whipped cream, etc., and you have to beg for the password to use their internet.
There used to be one real coffeehouse in town. It's still there, but the owner got tired of fighting the city government and now opens at noon. It turns into a bar at 6pm. That gives me a 6 hour window to get my work done. They also blast music so loud I can't hear myself scream at them to turn it down.
I have taken to driving 70 miles to the nearest real town. What has this country come to?
When I was in high school, I watched a lot of B-grade science fiction movies on late-night cable. These movies virtually promised me that by this point in my life I would be driving an armored dune buggy through a post-apocalyptic aftermath that looks a lot like the area around Barstow, escaping from mohawked cannibals as I search for more fuel. Where is the world that I was promised? I have the dune buggy. I've been working on the grizzled and slightly sinister looks and hairstyle that the lead male requires. But no dice. Instead, I am forced to spend the best years of my life paying off my Ford Focus and eating breakfast burritos on the way to my job talking on the phone in a cloth-covered office cubicle.
So I'm looking back on the last year, and I have decided that I went crazy. A year ago, I hand no debt, no bank accounts, a completely blank credit history, one $200 bill per month, and a few thousand dollars saved up. I was fulfilled and happy in my life. Since then, I have developed a need for three (3) bank accounts, a car payment, and six different bills each month. In other words, I will require $700 a month for the foreseeable future just to keep up. To top it off, I got a corporate job. I was wildly successful in my work, and so I was fired. I never got my last paycheck. Now I am $16,000 in debt. I'm miserable and stuck in a crappy town that I can't afford to leave. I broke almost every rule I have for success:
Never work for someone else
Never become middle class
Never buy something if you cannot afford it
Never rely on a corporation for anything
So as far as I'm concerned, I went crazy. But do you want to know the really crazy part? Most people do this stuff all the time!