How do you pass the time in a Heavy Traffic Jam?
I just read that there was a traffic jam in China that last almost an entire day. Vendors were selling food at triple the price and smashed windshields of motorists who refused to buy anything. It didn’t mention in the article regarding bathroom accommodations, however.
Fortunately, the worst traffic jams I’ve ever experienced lasted a little over an hour and it was in Chicago during rush hour traffic. If you were in a situation where the traffic jam lasted more than 4 hours; what would you do?
Wow! I have no idea. I have had similar experiences as you with a snail pace for an hour or longer. How horrendous with the violence because someone did not buy someone's goods. That is simply scary. The bathroom I don't know . . . I simply do not know.
One sad part is I carry quarters with me now always. I ran into a situation where the bathrooms in the businesses off the freeway all were pay restrooms. The fast food restaurant would give you a token if you bought something otherwise you needed a quarter. Running into a speedy mart (that is not the name of the market) they did not have tokens it was simply a quarter.
There are rest areas on long stretches of the freeway (I live in California), but they really are only available where there are not any townships or cities for great distances. They seem usually to be near some kind of national or state park too. At least that is my experience.
Luckily I haven't experienced jams as bad as that one in poor old China but I do occasionally get caught in commuting traffic here in West Yorkshire, UK. This can mean waiting in a slow moving line for about 30 minutes. Not so bad. The worst one I ever got stuck in was down near London, following accidents and road repairs on a weekend. We were in that one for just over two hours and it didn't budge.
We, like many other drivers and passengers, were forced to go walkabout because the weather was quite hot and staying in the car cooped up like an oven bird was not an option. Eventually we were released by the police but many people were at breaking point - thankfully we could use a Mother nature's hedgerows and shrubs for some light relief!
I find I go through phases when caught in slow traffic. Initially there's frustration, puzzlement, finger tapping, cursing, the odd bout of shouting, then fits of quiet anger, helpless appeal to the God of All Traffic, then, if I'm with someone else, a debate on the ever greedy motor industry, our human weaknesses when it comes to possessing our beloved car, the failings of public transport to lighten the load on the road and other moot points!!
I don't go through much traffic in Northern Kentucky. But on one occasion me and my fiance were late for a party and he was agitated. He was also driving and I wanted to calm him down(he hates being late for anything:). So I wrote a poem right there in the car and read it to him. It goes as follows:
Traffic by Alyssa Gripshover
Red lights beam their halted stare,
And from the left I get a glare,
From the older man, late for lunch,
Cause we are all caught up in a bunch!
Hunks of metal crammed so tight,
I think I might not get home tonight,
For miles ahead and behind,
Not an inch will you find.
Car horns blast to & fro,
From the drivers that just want to go,
To this place or that exit,
If only we could turn around & forget it!
But, Alas! We creep forward!
And I am closer toward,
The place to be, my destination,
And then I can get over all this frustration.
Then suddenly, we're stopped,
From somewhere someone dropped,
The F Bomb over the crowd,
It's the only tension release allowed.
Someday I'll get there, wait & see,
Nothing will deter me!
I just have to make it through the Traffic
Fortunately, the jam only lasted about a half hour and it only took me ten minutes to write. My fiance was cracking up the rest of the way!
I can't imagine I would do very well in a traffic jam that lasted such a long time. I would need to use the bathroom at some point, so I suppose that would be entertaining figuring out if I could run into some type of woods or store close to the car and run back before the car needed to move further.
I would need a lot of music to get me through the experience. I would also potentially strike up some conversations with other drivers by yelling out the window. I certainly hope I had some snacks in the car. If not, I would probably welcome some type of vendor coming by with food. I don't too well if I have to sit in a small space too long without food or drink.
Depending on the time of day, traffic in DC can be awful. I use the time to make phone calls. Construction is the biggest irritation in DC these days, always something going on, all times of the day.
I cannot imagine being stuck in a 4-hour traffic jam. I'd have to close my business down because I'd never make it to my office to see scheduled clients.
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