Friday, July 03, 2009

Say It Isn't So!

The government is taking all the fun out of travel! It's bad enough you have to stay seated for the first half hour of a flight; now there is talk that some air lines are planning to charge for use of the facilities! This can be tough on we more mature types. So, more and more often, we drive.

Now, according to the Wall Street Journal States are beginning to close down rest areas on the Interstate Highway System! Why can't some of the $48.1 billion in infrastructure stimulus be used to keep these facilities open?

It's tough enough when there is over a hundred miles between them, like Gold Creek to Bozeman over in Montana. It takes some prudent planning.

Heck, it takes prudent planning to get from here to Missoula, a mere 142 miles with two rest stops. We usually leave early in the morning if we're going to shop. That being the case we have to determine how much coffee we should drink before we leave and how much to take with us. There's the cold factor. How much time do we have to consume it before it gets cold and it's passage through us in relation to the rest stops.

Bacchus presents another dimension. Before he started his ten thousand medications he'd be good for the day if we dewatered him before we left. Now he has more need than we do because of the diuretics he's on. Never-the-less we've pretty much got it figured out.

I feel for others however. Exits are sometimes as far apart as rest stops if not farther. If you're traveling through southern Utah, you have to find a town to find a rest stop because that's where the water source is. As for exiting to find a gas station, that too can be iffy. The town can be miles from the actual exit. Restaurants and cafes are no sure bet either. Many say "restrooms for customers only" which means you have to buy something which usually would be a cup of coffee. So the process begins all over again. Plus a lot of them aren't too crazy about it if your dog needs relief too!

So far the majority of the states closing the doors on an essential service are in the east and south. Hopefully if won't creep westward any time soon!

I suppose part of the reason the states are doing this is because it doesn't create jobs. Phooey! How many of the projects given the green light for funding are offering anything other than temporary work at best? Rest areas need care takers, landscape and maintenance workers on a year round basis.

Those in charge need a reality check. They want us to get out and spend our money. They want us to eat, drink and make merry. They want us to drive so we'll buy all those wonderful new fuel efficient cars they hope we'll fall in love with. That means we can travel farther on a tank of gas.

They need to realize that we're not going to fill our car's tank and go if we can't empty our tank along the way!


Linda said...

Great post. Good thinking.

Elizabeth McKenzie said...

We're going to have to take porta potties with us. Either that or make like animals and go in the wild. Just make sure you don't eat a lot of food with geese in it, and don't forget the toilet paper.

cconz said...

Wow, i guess i'll stop taking our rest stops for granted. My last trip down interstate 80 i noticed a couple of stops closed. I asumed they were doing repairs.I'll remember my tp, Just in case.