I must say I have had a charmed, traffic-free existence most of my adult life. Working the radio early morning hours for as long as I did meant dodging the commuter headache nearly every single day. Well, here comes the headache because I am a part of the migrating majority now! These days I am typically on the road when most others are at least a few times a week, and have found myself driving into a world of fascination and disgust!
These vehicles that we spend a big slice of our lives enveloped in are now an extension of rooms in our house. They are bathrooms, dens, kitchens, and more! We have turned what were mere modes of transportation into mini-biospheres; they are fishbowls where life inside goes on with oblivion while people outside stare in amazement.
For me, the discovery is relatively new. I have always been aware of the cellphone-attached drivers (and admit to being one), and then there are the makeup appliers (yeah-guilty), but there are new discoveries I have made and to be honest, I really never wanted to be Balboa on this “New World” excursion!
I recently crawled along in my compact SUV during a confusing parade of brake lights and short sprints for what was at least a 40 minute spell on a morning commute. Next to me was a construction truck of some sort matching my efforts wheel for wheel. Now remember, this was a tandem drive we were taking and he was well aware he had company in the lane beside him as he headed to his destination. Despite my presence, this man spent a good portion of his drive with his finger crammed up his nose in some brain-tickling maneuver! I was horrified and amazed all at the same time. He knew I was there, but in the confines of his truck’s cab he felt totally content to explore the furthest regions of his sinuses.
Is this what I have been missing all these years? Is this what I have to look forward to more of in the future? If this is what people do -and much worse than that I am sure-I am considering a life of teleconferences and Skypeing to get my business accomplished. I’m not sure I have the stomach for this thing called “the commute”!