Highways, speed limits and dirt roads


I like dirt roads. The only problem is there are few left, even in the countryside.

Back roads today are as plastic as the credit card.

I know I am an old man, and probably drive like one. My defense is, what’s wrong with observing the speed limits?

It is clear when you get out in the open air what the lawmakers want — the roadsides are clearly marked with those white, rectangular signs telling you how fast you can go without getting bitten by one of those black and gray snakes. We live in a society of interstate super highways that allow unreal speed limits that have created side-by-side, bumper-to-bumper traffic at a deadly speed.

Summed up quickly, our speed-it-up world today could care less of seeing or smelling or enjoying the roses, because the highways today provide all the makings of a combat zone with their endless stretches of concrete chaos. Try driving in town at 35 and they stay on your bumper. Pass at the first chance and they flip you the bird.

It gets worse.

Get on the highway and observe those rectangular speed signs of 45 or 55 or 65 or 70… Observing those speed limits or wandering into the wrong lane can trigger road rage or worse.

Sprinkle in some other issues: using cellphones, eating, applying makeup or brushing your hair (while driving) and the explosions kickoff.

I still like the back roads, but the crown jewel — the dirt road, to me is like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

The pickup truck and the tractor traffic are still visible on the back roads. I suppose they will be there for a while. But what about the dirt road? It is getting harder and harder to find one. I’ll confess to being an old man and therefore driving like one.

How’d you like to see a 75-year-old getting on down the highway like he is at Darlington or enjoying a Talladega night?

I like the serenity of the dirt road. I like the scenery of the woods bordering them. I like the dust and the smell of the countryside.

It all provides a raised curtain, making it easier to see, smell and enjoy the roses.

Hopefully, the dirt road will not totally disappear.


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