It never fails! It is almost like Murphy’s Law. Your alarm clock didn’t go off and you overslept. You jump in the shower and there is no hot water left! You quickly get dressed, grab a cup of coffee on the way out and jump into your vehicle. Aghhh! You forgot your keys inside. You run back into the house, you grab your keys… kiss your kids… kiss your spouse… pet the family dog… and run back out the door. You peel out of your driveway and as you fly down the road, you look at the clock. “Sweet! I can still make it to work on time!” you think to yourself, “It’s gonna be a great day!”
As you take a swig of coffee and happily turn the corner, you come to a screeching halt and spill your coffee ALL over your lap. “So much for a great day” you think. Traffic is backed up for MILES. You can’t see what the hold up is, but you know it is not good. Is it an accident? Is it a school bus stop? For the next 30 minutes you are now held up in “Construction Zone Hell.” As much as you do not want to be happy that THESE folks made it to work on time to get started, we should be glad that someone is out there making our roads SAFE and drivable.
We don’t want roads like these, do we?
I am certainly NOT a fan of heavy traffic and even more NOT a fan of sitting in heavy construction traffic, on warm days, in a warm car. Yes, I have air conditioning in my car, but with leather seats it can take awhile to cool down, especially after it has been sitting for a bit. As I often sit there and stew, I am reminded how these road warriors are out there every day, in the elements, doing their part to keep the roads passable, pot-hole free and well marked. Could you imagine how awful our roads would be if there was no one around to maintain them? Folks, I do not know about YOU, but I do not have the disposable money lying around to throw at purchasing new tires on a WEEKLY basis. I just do not. So the fact that they are there, I am grateful.
Yes, even with a WHITE sports car, and driving on fresh milled and paved roads, I still (through gritted teeth) am “happy” to have them there to do the services they offer. I do not mind spending 4-6 hours after washing and waxing my car, sitting there pulling tar off the undercarriage of my Mustang on a warm day. While I do not blame the workers for it, this part is definitely no fun, but a much better price to pay than having roads that are unmaintained. My friend Daniel Geist who now owns a junk removal Virginia Beach based franchise used to work for the government, fixing up the roads and what not, he actually broke down to me the REAL costs of road maintenance.
But WHY does it seem that the pickup of work is in the warmer months, when we are getting into the thick of Tourist season, when there is ALREADY heavy traffic? Well, think about how difficult this might be in the wintertime. It might be a very difficult task to try to accomplish this when there is ice and snow on the ground. Granted, in these parts, we do not see much of the “white stuff” falling from the sky, but when we get it – it is usually significant. So, if our brave road warriors tried to start a project, stripped a road and then it snowed on top of it? It would be a nightmare to clean up, drive on and would take EVEN LONGER to get finished. Now, are you still angry about sitting in a few minutes of traffic?
Okay, we could have them not mill or pave any roads any more, and then they will find other jobs that are more important. When the potholes start to show and there is no one around to fill them in, we will find the value in the importance of what they are doing. Preventative maintenance to our roads is just as important as emergency maintenance. The only difference is the timing of when they are done.
So, the next time you get stuck in road construction traffic, be thankful that they are there. Without them, we would all be stuck in the mud.