Posted by: Sand Squiggles -- Richard Modlin's Blog | June 29, 2010

AVOIDING INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS

For the past 10 or so years, I have been trying to avoid driving on the interstate highway system.  My reasons are in the articles below.

AVOIDING INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS

             Windshield wipers slapping back and forth, flaying Nature’s watery fusillade from my windshield, but what’s in front of me is still barely visible.  I’m driving just north of Atlanta through a deluge on Interstate 75.  All I can barely see beyond this turbulence, spraying my van at a speed seemingly twice that of the limit, the wheels of an tractor-trailer roaring on my left.  Some twenty yards of so ahead, vague taillights of another semi vacillate between faded pink and glaring red.  Never mind the Camero that just fishtailed into the lane inches from my front bumper.  My right foot is already touching the break.  It seems as if we are all highballing through the Magic Tunnel Carwash.  

            America’s interstates were once a relatively safe network of highways that got travelers to their destinations in record time.  But now days, most of the mobile population wants to arrive before they depart—or, when on the freeway, overtake and drive faster then the lead vehicle. 

            Interstates have become beltways of competition for the impatient, myopic local residents, Nascar wanna-bes, and chase-car-driver tryouts. Most lack the prerequisites needed to negotiate Dwight D. Eisenhower’s National System of Interstate and Defense Highways:  attention, courtesy, and knowledge.  Driving interstates requires a motorist to have the concentration and fortitude of a F-16 fighter pilot engaged in an aerial dogfight.  Today’s interstate drivers must control the debilitating phobias and tensions resulting from speed, closeness, fatigue, anger, hostility, and the distraction of natural and artificial wonders that appear and disappear on the landscape. 

            I like driving, finding new places, seeing towns, cities, and relaxing vistas, and meeting people while I travel. I hate being tailgated at seventy miles per hour, boxed in by a convoy of eighteen-wheelers that are trying the get from Nashville to Louisville in three hours of less, and being passed when I’m at or just above the speed limit.  This is why, when I journey around our country, I choose to avoid the interstates and follow the blue highways.  My trips are so much more relaxing and I’ve seen so much more. 

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© Richard Modlin, 2010


Responses

  1. AVOIDING INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…


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