I took the day off so I could break my procrastination cycle - I drove to the downtown campus and delivered my class portfolio a DAY EARLY! It's a small step in the right direction. I hope I can keep it going...eventually. But for the next few days I'm going to be playing catch-up on everything around here (again) - decorating the tree and the house, sending out cards, going through the overflowing pile of unread mail on my desk, catching up on e-mail...
On my way into town, I suddenly had this horrible feeling that I was lost - I was on a rode I had driven millions of times, but I found myself in a totally unfamiliar area. It took me a few minutes to realize a new portion of the road had opened. It bypasses a section nicknamed "the S curves", a section prone to serious accidents because people try to take the curves too fast. After several years and many accidents, the highway department realized there were too many impatient people who refuse to slow down on the curves and so have a tendency to cross into other people's lanes (oncoming traffic, of course) so they built a straight(er) bypass.
I've had mixed feelings about taking away the curves - I grew up in an area where almost all of the roads are straight lines (and there were STILL deadly accidents) and I actually liked the curves - they seemed like part of the personality of the hills. I had mixed feelings even after Tom was hit head-on and almost killed by a teenager who crossed into his lane on the first curve back in 1998. He had extensive injuries and spent a week in the hospital - he still aches all over, especially during cold weather. I stayed the whole week with him (my third published essay - I'll add it on here...someday.)
After Tom's accident, our mayor instigated a change in that particular curve, but it was a good compromise - it was still a curve, but widened and stretched out so that the kick at the end was gone. I don't have an opinion about this new section yet - I was too disoriented to think about it beyond "where the heck am I?" But I have to admit I said extra prayers every time my kids had to drive those 'S' curves - especially if it was raining - so I guess if it really makes a difference in the number of accidents, keeps even one family from experiencing what we went through with Tom's accident, or gives a parent peace of mind, then I'll be happy about the change.