Friday, May 22, 2009

Drive Me Crazy

Those of us who live in rural areas do a lot more driving than city dwellers. Putting all environmental concerns aside I will admit that I love to drive. There are few things I find more enjoyable than crusing down an open road with one hand on the wheel and one on the gear shift, listening to music or the radio or my passenger(s) or just the sound of the world whooshing by. My father also loved to drive, and my mother does as well...maybe I come by it genetically. How about you?

This is a picture snapped a couple of years ago as David and I drove into Los Angeles via the Grapevine. Much as we both love driving, we decided it is best done in places other than LA.


8 comments:

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I agree. I make that drive often. Also, the 14 always puts me on edge with its narrow lanes, bumper-to-bumper traffic, and trucks going 85 MPH. Doesn't California have CHPs anymore? Anyway, my husband and kids just left for a trip to So. Cal. and my husband is planning on having my son drive the majority of the way so that he can get in his driver's permit hours. Fortunately, he knows better than to let him drive once they start hitting the L.A. traffic.

Jean said...

I detest driving in traffic, so LA would definitely not be a place I would want to drive. But put me on the open road, with no vehicle in front to block my view, and I could drive forever!

AareneX said...

I drive (and HAVE driven) a lot, including the Grapevine.

The only good thing about roads in the part of the world is that I know a really cool ghost story that happened there...

Black Jack's Carol said...

I learned to drive (first, a motorcycle and then a car) in Montreal, and I guess, as traffic goes, that's small potatoes compared to LA, but traffic has never bothered me. Later, I spent two years in Grand Falls, NB, and then three in Bridgewater, NS, It seemed that to get anywhere, I had to drive for hours. I came to hate the tedium of the open road. When I returned to Montreal to go back to school, my car died, and while I felt a bit sad that it had finally bit the dust, I didn't miss the maintenance and parking hassles. I was carless for 8 years, but rented one to pick up Black Jack in Seattle almost two years ago. I appreciated that I had a way to get her home, but was happy to drop the car off when we were back in Vancouver. I guess it might not come as a surprise that I prefer my bike.

EvenSong said...

I LEARNED to drive in LA, tho it was back in the '60's, when things weren't quite so bad.

These days, Al and I share the 20 mile commute to town, and it is a good opportunity for us to gear up (going in) and wind down (coming home) from our respective daily grinds. Of course, all but the last mile or so is country roads--"traffic" is when we meet another car...

Another couple of weeks and my driving will devolve to pleasantly boring round-and-rounds in the hay field on my neighbor's John Deere.

countban = what my principal has told those of us keeping track of the number of days remaining in the school year

Carole said...

I don't mind my commute either, but then I don't face Los Angeles (or even Vancouver!) traffic. Most days it takes just under 40 minutes door-to-door, which doesn't seem too bad, considering all the upsides of where I live. (I also don't have to do it every day, since some days I can work from home.)

Brandy said...

Haha, driving in LA... Sigh.

Hubby has put 25000 miles on the Prius in one year. We took one trip down to San Diego, and only one trip to Vegas in this year. The rest is LA driving.

His office is 26 miles from our house on one of the busiest freeway stretches in the world - the 405.

I firmly believe the Prius was invented for this drive. If hubby leaves the house at 7am, he should arrive at his office by the airport by about 9:30 on a good day. Thankfully, he leaves at 8:30 and gets to work before 10am most days. Coming home can take anywhere from 1 to 4 hours, depending on accidents, holiday escape traffic, road work, etc. In the "stop and go" traffic, he gets above 45 MPG in that Prius, WITH the A/C running! We adore it!

I have made sure over the years to ONLY work in "The Valley", where I COULD take surface streets or a large maze of freeways to any of my jobs, when I worked. I also made sure my route would NOT put me in rush hour traffic for any stretch of distance or time! Now I drive one or 2 days a week, usually to my doctor about 12 miles away. I do get on the freeway - for one exit! Quite the shortcut for my route, and good for the car to rev up to speed.

I try to avoid traffic ever since I lived in Riverside and drove to OC every day. Even back in the mid 80's, the 91 was a horrible long yucky commute. We would leave around 5:30 am to get to the base by 7:30. Eventually we started taking the mountain roads over the 74, but then we still had to take 2 other busy freeways to get home after that... Good way to learn extreme patience as well as excellent clutch skills!

We've gotten good at planning our routes, there's usually 500 ways to get somewhere, and we are fortunate to know WHEN to avoid WHICH freeways!

But yes, the open road with good music blaring, there's nothing like it in any country! And nothing like the romance of a nighttime drive in the mountains or countryside, with the moon shining down....

dp said...

I hoped you would weigh in about LA, Brandy. I am with you on the last point, especially if the car happens to be convertible.