Southern California is considered paradise by many. Sunny and warm most of the year, beautiful ocean, mountain range nearby, movie stars you meet, malls, Starbucks on every corner, countless possibilities for recreation, retreat for organic lovers. For motorcyclist in presents many opportunities to enjoy windy canyons, cruise on the PCH and ride trails offroad. Pick your poison, So Cal has it all. What’s there not to love?
However sometimes I really wish I lived somewhere in Montana. Did I mention I hate traffic? Let me explain. As a motorcyclist, traffic is not something I’m afraid of knowing that I can dodge it and be at my destination on time. It’s a pleasure to split lanes knowing that poor people in cages are stuck in this four wheel mess. Still, when the road is clear it gives me entirely different feelings to twist that throttle wide open, this is what the motorcycling is all about. In daily life motorbike becomes a smart choice for commuting, saving time and money.
Unfortunately it’s hard to depend on motorcycle only. I still need to go shopping, drive to school to pick up a kid, dine out and run the daily chores. Every time I dive a car I become that poor soul stuck in my cage. Have you ever tried to go to the ocean with your family on a lovely Sunday morning only to get stuck in a gridlock halfway there? It just plain blows.
Today I really lost my nerve. Normally my motorcycle commute to work takes me a little over one hour each way. Today I drove my car and sure enough it took me more than 2 hours to get to my destination. No, there wasn’t anything extraordinary happening. A couple of small accidents on the way, just your daily freeway routine. As I sat there moving 3mph, I was really angry at myself for not riding a bike. I’m not looking forward to driving home tonight.
How can this traffic problem be solved? A lot of “bright” minds are working on it and Caltrans is spending millions of dollars on construction trying to make a dent in this issue. If anything all the construction creates even more traffic and by the time they are done more cars will be on the road so their efforts will be in vain.
There are few simple ways to prevent traffic, they are free and WILL improve the situation. Maybe the goverment should spend tax dollars promoting these ways.
- Keep your distance while driving, every day I see multiple rearend accidents
- Don’t keep your distance while waiting at the light, few more cars will go through if you pull up to the car in front of you
- Don’t block intersection, you will create HUGE traffic when the light goes red and you are still there.
- In case of an accident move out of the way immediately, don’t sit in the left lane of the freeway waiting for a miracle (this applies to police and emergency vehicles as well, usually they create more traffic than necessary)
- Ride motorcycle or a scooter
- Think about other motorists, and respect them
These are simple rules but few people follow them. As of today, my hate of traffic overcomes all the love I have for So California. Happy Valentine’s Day.