An accident on the North Shore (tragic, actually) closed the Lions Gate bridge today. It was morning rush hour and we were ensnared along with thousands of others. Tens of thousands. We managed to join the madding crawl to the 2nd Narrows bridge and arrived at our appointment in town 2.5 hours after we left home. With no traffic (that never happens anymore, we are told) it would have taken 30 minutes. Tops. We had allowed an hour……just in case. It wasn‘t enough.
Distance-as-the-raven flies? Maybe 6 miles.
I am not complaining. The poor sods who suffered from the accident had it very bad and we were just ever-so-slightly inconvenienced and the doctor we were scheduled to see had also been trapped on the wrong side. No big deal for us or him. Not really.
So, what is the point? (the point is Moo)
Today’s incident stood in such stark contrast to our normal ‘commute’. That is the point.
We live on a remote island, fer Gawd’s sake!! And yet, in 2.5 hours I can go to our nearest shopping district and do a complete two-or-three store shop. (OK, we can’t get back in that time but 2.5 hours is most of the job done, anyway.)
My time is taken up with riding in boats, traveling logging roads, schlepping totes and a short 15 minute ferry ride (usually much less than a half-hour wait). It is rarely spent in line-ups. And it is NOT ever stuck in traffic! I don’t have crowds, jams, accidents or construction delays of more than a few seconds….OK, a minute….maybe a pod of Orcas now and then to distract me…that is about it.
Even in town (albeit a small town) one never has to stay stopped in traffic at any particular light for more than one change and, to be fair, there are only a half-dozen controlled intersections to deal with as a rule anyway.
On a good day – in the Big Smoke – I can make it through 1 mile of downtown in 15 to 20 minutes. On a bad day……well, see first paragraph.
I forgot how insane that is.
But I am being reminded. Every day.
If all goes well, we are given say, 80 years on the planet and 1/3 of that is spent sleeping. Another good portion is spent eating, pooping and showering. And shaving. Another third is spent working or in school. God knows the balance of what is left is mostly inane conversation, TV, shopping and other assorted colossal wastes of time (like reading this blog!). So I really don’t think spending any time in traffic, queuing in line-ups and/or waiting on others is the way I want to spend any more time at all. And a traffic jam is amongst the worst places to waste time I can think of (airports are the worst!).
I admit that this blog verges on the edge of another rant and that is also not the point. The point is that we are being herded and corralled and controlled and Orwelled in the city to such a huge extent that it is literally wasting our life. And I can no longer see the point of that. Not a bit. Maybe a short time for young people to access the gene pool but there is not enough money to warrant a longer duration.
But young people don’t know that.
This new perspective may be an age thing. Probably is. But, honestly……..how can we allow our life-force to slip away like that?
I did, tho. I did. Till I was 55!! How mad is that!?
And speaking of Mad Cow, I watched a beautiful young woman walk her new baby-in-a-pram along a busy road. She was dressed like a model in leathers and fluff and high heels and gobs of makeup. Traffic roared around her. Buildings loomed everywhere. It was bedlam-in-grey concrete Hell. But she was so pleased with herself. Justifiably. She had made a cute kid and was strutting her stuff. She had scored in the gene pool. God bless her.
But I suspect that she and her husband will now work like dogs to pay off a bazillion dollar mortgage………………………
And all I saw was just another head of cattle and her calf…………