Saturday, February 23, 2008

Route 93 My Friend; Route 93 My Enemy

Northern New England continues to be a winter-sports-lover's dream. However, for the un-athletic world, well, the dreamy lyrics of the song "Winter Wonderland" faded long ago.

Allow me to clarify for those who haven't once consulted a news source of any kind in the last two months. Once a week, every week, there has been a snowstorm that has exhibited the following characteristics: cold weather resulting in the type of snow that either sticks on a surface or blows around into large, poorly placed piles, the heaviest period of snowfall corresponding with either one or both "rush hour" periods without a plow to be seen, and people in SUVs plowing through these conditions at 70 miles per hour regardless of the presence of two inches of snow on the road surface and dozens of other cars attempting to be careful around them.

What amazes me the most is the fact that major highways upon which hundreds and thousands of people a day drive are many times left to the mercies of Mother Nature to the point that travel on them becomes extremely dangerous. Yesterday, for example, I was driving north on Route 93. All four lanes were covered in powdery snow. I was on the road for about 45 minutes and I did not see one plow, let alone one plow actually physically plowing the road surface. Behind me was miles and miles of traffic--hundreds of cars trying to get a head start on the upcoming vacation week at the many available ski resorts. I counted three rollovers on that stretch--mostly comprised of the "I'm invincible with a car bigger than the average motor home" crowd. It was incredible.

On the other hand, Route 93 is also the most efficient way out of here.