It’s a strange thing isn’t it, the speed limit? That’s supposed to be as fast as you go, the top limit. In everyday culture however, it is the base. We drive around impatiently urging people along. If people are going the speed limit or, God forbid, under it, they are commonly tailgated, sometimes passed regardless of the legality of the action. It’s something that everyone knows and learns only by experience. The more you drive a certain road, the more realize the expectations of driving on that road. Some roads are culturally driven faster or slower than normal. On some roads, you learn to skip a stop sign, or learn who has the right of way contrary to legal tradition. Once you drive the road a while and you learn the secrets of how to avoid delay, how fast to take corners, of how to drive it better.
It’s not the road that changes. It’s the way it’s driven. I have driven this road before, many times, many different ways. I haven’t yet figured out how best to drive it. There doesn’t seem a clear culture for it, and there aren’t speed limit signs. One thing is for sure though, every time I get really in touch with the road, once I start to think I’ve got a hold on it, once I start to feel at home, PennDOT comes in and tears the whole road to shambles. Stop signs and traffic jams block me from the hand-out-the-window type of cruising that seems so natural when I’m in tune with the road. Nothing makes me more frustrated. The road rage kicks in and I do stupid things like take a different road for miles out of the way even if takes longer than waiting just so I’m moving. I have to be moving. Even if it’s the wrong direction, I have to keep moving.
Sitting still is torture. This road is pretty, sometimes it’s unbearably beautiful, but sometimes it’s bumpy and sometimes its being resurfaced. Sometimes it feels like I could drive on it forever, sometimes the bridge is out and I’m too scared to jump the gap. Why do I insist on driving on it? It’s the only road I know. Why do I insist on continuing along this path? Because I want to. I’ve never been to end of this road, and I can’t stand a mystery.