Random observations while driving in the U.S. on the fourth of July weekend:
The pixelboard sign on the QEW approaching the Burlington Skyway last Friday, July 4, noted the bridge would be closed at 10 p.m. that evening. Didn't say for how long. This meant traffic would be diverted over the old lift bridge. Maybe Hutch's hamburger stand on the Burlington Beach strip would have been happy.
Now, I understand there are only two seasons in Canada - winter, and construction. And I know that deadlines for roadwork are tight.
But, um, the fourth of July weekend? When our closest (and richest) neighbours might just be coming across the border for a wee holiday?
OK, with the strong Canadian dollar and
rising (for them) gasoline prices, they aren't traveling up here as much as
they used too. And it would have been night-time (it was open by the following afternoon at least).
But couldn’t they have let that timetable slide a couple days, so as not to inconvenience any late-arriving guests?
It isn't the worst scheduling of roadworks I have encountered. Several years ago I was driving in England on a Monday, and the traffic report noted that the high street of Wimbledon would be closed for construction for two weeks, starting on that very day.
What else might you associate with Wimbledon? Something about a tennis match, perhaps?
Yep - started that very same day.
Intriguing Road Sign # 1: "Bruce's Flowers, 2 miles ahead - we smell fabulous!''
I bet you do.
Where were all the flags? On this particular weekend especially, I expected the ultra-patriotic Yanks to have flags all over the place. Not so much. Some fireworks here and there. One American told me that flags are almost more of a Memorial Day thing.
Intriguing Road Sign # 2: "Highway 219. Construction started - 1979. Completed - ???? Memorial to victims of Highway 219''.
I think that's what it read anyway - shouldn't really be taking notes while driving.
Reading between the lines here, it looks as if, contrary to usual practice, the local residents aren't complaining of a new road being put through their community, but about the fact that this new four-lane divided freeway has been under construction for almost 30 years, and they are tired of dying on the old two-laner.
219 is the main drag south out of Buffalo to the ski area of Ellicottville. If you want to go further south and want to take a completed Interstate, you have to head well west to Erie Pennsylvania and down through Pittsburgh, or even further east to Binghampton and down to Philadelphia.
I think the locals have a right to be cheesed.
Intriguing Road Sign # 3: "Mud, Sweat
and Gears'' - an off-road specialty shop in Ellicottville, about an hour south