Opinion

Traffic snarls aren’t all fun and games

Celestial Musings

In September 1999, my husband Bryan and I moved from St. Marys, Ga., to Goose Creek, S.C. It took three hours to drive through Georgia’s rural, magnolia-tree lined roads. Three hours.

In the meantime, our furniture, rather than taking three hours like we did, was put into a storage facility for two weeks. Our belongings traveled the slow road to nowhere and back and ended up in a storage facility in Savannah, Ga.

The day our furniture arrived, we were overjoyed. As would any American family, one of the first things we did was plug in our television.

We spent the next 24 hours watching this mysterious force called “Hurricane Floyd” hover over the Atlantic Ocean trying to decide if it should visit Florida, Georgia or South Carolina.

All three states were evacuated, from the southern tip of Florida, then all the way up the eastern coastline. Floridians jammed the roadways, followed closely by Georgians then South Carolinians.

A road trip from Charleston, S.C., to Columbia, S.C., normally a 90-ish minute drive, took 14 hours.

There were people on the side of the road who had travel barbecue pits, just cooking good eats because hey, we had the time. When the driver moved forward a bit, they’d hollar out the window: “Honey, we moved up.”

The barbecuer would hoist the barbecue pit to its wheels, slide forward a few steps and hunker back down.

Did I mention it was scorching hot and we couldn’t use the air conditioner?

It was miserable.

This explains why I hate – hate, already – traffic.

This is why I have to throw out a red flag in the face of the traffic revisions the Poulsbo City Council is considering for downtown. Speed bumps? One-ways? More stop signs?

Granted, I’m not an expert on traffic – I just hate it, remember? – but this sounds like a snarl waiting to happen. So much so that if anyone is considering a roadside café, now would be a good time to start the paperwork.

May I suggest a business plan? Station one person on a street corner with a notebook and a cell phone to take coffee orders, then call it forward two blocks, where the portable coffee stand would be.

“Yes, I’ll have a shot in the dark with vanilla flavoring and 2 percent. I’m in the white Hyundai with Fresno State Bulldog stickers in the back window.”

Exaggeration? Maybe.

Whether you feel one way or the other about the new traffic plan (outlined on page A1), your voice needs to be heard.

The council will have a workshop on the proposed traffic revisions from 7-8 p.m. this Wednesday in the council chambers.

Attend.

Speak out.

Be heard.

And if anyone’s going to take me up on my business plan, make sure I get my fair cut.

Celeste Cornish is the editor of the North Kitsap Herald. And she hates sitting in traffic.

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