I took a little journey Monday, leaving Havana at 0-dark-15 (actually 6:15 a.m., but yes, very dark) and what should have been a two-and-a-half hour one-way trip took me an extra hour.
Seems like there’s a very healthy rush hour at that unheard of time for Georgians who work for state government in Tallahassee. So, in misting rain, I had to dodge all of the mental elbows of all the folks vying for space on US 27, weaving in and out of traffic as if that would get them to work first.
If they’re all going to get there for the day, why the mad scramble to get in front of everyone who is actually IN front of them?
I used to work for the state. I knew I had to leave Havana by 6 a.m. or be in neck-and-neck traffic until at least 8:30. Easy. As a division director, I left later, stayed later and missed the afternoon nightmare as well. I also spent a goodly amount of time after hours and on weekends making return calls to machines that more efficiently got my work done without a lot of talky-talk.
Anyway, back to the journey. I no sooner got on I-10 than it started pouring rain. That slowed me down. I started to count dead opossums (opposi?) on the side of the road. Let me tell you, these critters are nowhere near extinction!
Of course, I then ran into fog, smoke and construction around Live Oak and rush hour again at Lake City, and was extremely lucky to get my third rush of the morning in Gainesville, where I caught the last push of their rush hour around 9:00 a.m. I still dragged into my appointment a little early and was taken right in. A half hour later and I was ready to do it all in reverse.
Where did all of these people come from on I-75? There weren’t nearly as many cars/trucks/semis/RVs on the way down! And while on the way south, I had seen a total of one law enforcement vehicle except for two Department of Agriculture cruisers at the weigh station on I-10. On the way back? About 50 local county sheriff’s cars and multiple FHP cars at multiple stops. It was great to see that most motorists are now familiar with the state’s “Move Over When Emergency Vehicles Are Parked on Side of Road” law, and complying.
Finally getting onto I-10 west for the final stage of the journey, I felt like I was on the downhill run. Oh. 90+ miles? More construction? New smoke from new construction. Exit #199 couldn’t come too soon! Thankfully, this type of journey is not one I’ll often need to take by myself. Trips like this go so much more quickly when you have someone with you, whether you drive or not. Just having someone else to share the space, share the angst with makes it seem like it takes a lot less time. I’m just very glad to have made the trip safely and am back home in peaceful Havana!