Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Perfect Storm

It took me two hours to make a rountrip to the skating rink tonight to get my son to hockey practice. The rink is about 8 1/2 miles away. Why did it take so damn long? Well, sit back and I'll tell ya.

The rink is south of me - just off IH35. From my house, I go east to get to I35, and then south to Austin. There are only two eastbound roads near me. The first one, 620, was shut right in the middle of rush hour traffic because of a gas main break. They are replacing the utility poles, and apparently they hit a gas main. So east and west traffic was closed.

I can get to the other eastbound road by going through my neighborhood and taking Hairy Man Road (yes, that's really the name!). Hairy Man is a winding two lane road.... Hairy Man would take me to the other eastbound road, it is approximately a three mile drive. So I headed that way. But so did every other single person who was pouring off eastbound 620 at rush hour. This is a backwater road, two lanes, and a couple of four-way stops. It took me 45 minutes to go three miles!!!! What the hell!

On top of that, where Sam Bass and I35 meet, a tractor-trailer had overturned. Luckily, it was after the access road on the northbound side, so I was able to get on I35 and head south.

And then, the same deal coming home. I left the house at 6:25. Got home at 8:30. This roundtrip normally takes me 1/2 hour.

On top of that, I only had a quarter tank of gas, and I was just praying during all that stop and go traffic that I would make it to a gas station.

The people who planned these roads obviously never considered the growth we have had in the last ten years and the lack of alternate routes.

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