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6 hours ago, Dillon Levenque said:

Boston has the second-worst drivers on the freaking continent!

I learned to drive in Boston about 55 years ago and have heard that claim about Boston's drivers being "the worst" most of my life.  That criticism deserves a little clarification.  Boston is one of the nation's oldest cities.  It has a street system that was laid out initially along cow paths that snaked around the hills that define the city's landscape -- except for a more logical, rectilinear chunk that was laid out in the 1880s when Bostonians filled in the Back Bay with dirt lugged in from the suburbs.  Many of those streets are narrow, one-way roads, thanks to the perennial high value of real estate.  People north of the Charles River can cross it to the south (and vice- versa) at only seven bridges, which are always bottlenecks. Starting after WWII, the city and the state made major "improvements" that resulted in opening up parts of the core city -- leveling Scully Square and parts of Chinatown -- and adding major arteries.  They pioneered the introduction of some sensible changes like roundabouts (locally, "traffic circles") that are finally becoming common across the US.  Some of those changes actually helped traffic.  Others simply dumped people into the city faster and increased its parking problem.

Boston's drivers cope with the roadways in logical ways.  Where parking is scarce, they improvise by double parking, which of course makes narrow streets narrower.  They ignore traffic lights that often do little more than slow down the flow more.  They change lanes (where there are lanes) randomly to get around obstacles, including each other.  And they curse at visitors who are easily lost or confused, and who make matters worse by stopping to figure out what to do next.  I think it's still true that Boston has the highest rate of "fender-bender" accidents in the country. On the other hand, the rate of major, life threatening accidents is among the lowest.  You simply can't get going fast enough to do much serious damage.

I visit Boston rarely these days, having spent the past 40+ years in the Midwest. When I do visit, it takes me a day or two to relearn the shifting geography and attune myself to the traffic flow.  I have never had as much as a scratch on a bumper in all these years, however, and even have successfully pulled a trailer through the maze of downtown traffic more than once.  I have friends who eschew public transportation and have driven into the city daily for most of their lives -- cursing out-of-towners all the while but navigating easily.  Are they part of the problem, or have they simply learned how to be successful drivers in a confusing tangle of roads?  Are the "bad" drivers really just the ones who haven't learned to cope yet?

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I live in Tennessee..

You want to talk about bad drivers?

The High school I went to,Drivers ED was first come first serve and Not everyone got in.. You don't even have to have drivers education to get your license in Tennessee.. you just have to be 16 and able to pass the written and drivers test..

I live about 10 minutes from work..Everyday on the way home I cross paths with at least 4 or 5 drivers that are over the line in my lane..Around curves they are in my lane,in the straightaways..

I can count at least 6 times out of the whole time I have been driving that an oncoming car was fully in my lane and had me each time getting ready to go off road in my Jeep..They always seemed to notice,only after I have already had enough time to decide what I was going to do,which was  go left or right of them..

It's like a lot of them have so much going on in their vehicles,But paying attention to their driving..

It's bad enough just looking out for deer and cows and whatever else that wanders out..

People in Tennessee,at least where I'm at,Drive terrible..Just terrible..

 

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3 hours ago, Rolig Loon said:

I learned to drive in Boston about 55 years ago and have heard that claim about Boston's drivers being "the worst" most of my life.  That criticism deserves a little clarification.  Boston is one of the nation's oldest cities.  It has a street system that was laid out initially along cow paths that snaked around the hills that define the city's landscape -- except for a more logical, rectilinear chunk that was laid out in the 1880s when Bostonians filled in the Back Bay with dirt lugged in from the suburbs.  Many of those streets are narrow, one-way roads, thanks to the perennial high value of real estate.  People north of the Charles River can cross it to the south (and vice- versa) at only seven bridges, which are always bottlenecks. Starting after WWII, the city and the state made major "improvements" that resulted in opening up parts of the core city -- leveling Scully Square and parts of Chinatown -- and adding major arteries.  They pioneered the introduction of some sensible changes like roundabouts (locally, "traffic circles") that are finally becoming common across the US.  Some of those changes actually helped traffic.  Others simply dumped people into the city faster and increased its parking problem.

Boston's drivers cope with the roadways in logical ways.  Where parking is scarce, they improvise by double parking, which of course makes narrow streets narrower.  They ignore traffic lights that often do little more than slow down the flow more.  They change lanes (where there are lanes) randomly to get around obstacles, including each other.  And they curse at visitors who are easily lost or confused, and who make matters worse by stopping to figure out what to do next.  I think it's still true that Boston has the highest rate of "fender-bender" accidents in the country. On the other hand, the rate of major, life threatening accidents is among the lowest.  You simply can't get going fast enough to do much serious damage.

I visit Boston rarely these days, having spent the past 40+ years in the Midwest. When I do visit, it takes me a day or two to relearn the shifting geography and attune myself to the traffic flow.  I have never had as much as a scratch on a bumper in all these years, however, and even have successfully pulled a trailer through the maze of downtown traffic more than once.  I have friends who eschew public transportation and have driven into the city daily for most of their lives -- cursing out-of-towners all the while but navigating easily.  Are they part of the problem, or have they simply learned how to be successful drivers in a confusing tangle of roads?  Are the "bad" drivers really just the ones who haven't learned to cope yet?

Interesting. The bulk of my Boston driving was downtown, which I suppose means some of the  most tangled and odd-angled streets, downtowns typically being the oldest part of a city. Virtually the entire rest of the time I was in and around Boston (2 weeks) I was on the plentiful public transit. I'd rented a car and since we used a primitive navigational aid called "Maps" in those days (lines printed on big sheets of paper, if you can even imagine such a thing) I'd decided to visit the AAA office to score a few before starting my motor tour of the area (I always added time to work trips so I could get in exploration).

Thus all the rest of my "Boston Drivers" experience was visual. I suppose a lot of what I saw could have been caused by visitors rather than locals. But my experience just getting the maps and getting out was harrowing, to say the least. Parking, as I am sure you know, was a delight. There weren't even any double-park spaces left (seriously: there were double parked cars all over the place, further narrowing the already narrow streets. And the bulk of my bad experiences were a result of driving by cabdrivers, who presumably knew the way around just fine.

I was never so happy as when I finally got on the Masspike heading west, even though the radio promised me a line of thunderstorms ahead (delivered as promised, too). I never drove on the Boston streets again. After I finished my big loop. Vermont, central New York, Pennsylvania, Arlington VA, then up the New Jersey Turnpike to Manhattan (where I didn't even THINK about driving: I spent the night on the Jersey side and used the bus to get downtown), up the Hudson River, through Connecticut, on the Beltway around Boston and on to Salem where I spent the night before taxiing to Logan for the trip home. Fun.

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@Dillon Levenque It sounds like you avoided at least some of the experience by taking cabs and the T.  Boston truly is hard to navigate around in for "foreigners".  I'm not sure that any city is much better if you are traveling by cab, however.  I have been in genuine bumper car cab rides in Beijing, disorienting ones in DC, and -- probably the most harrowing ride in my life -- a 60 mph ride through San Francisco at 1 a.m. with a cabbie who was arguing with his wife on the phone at the time.  All in all, I prefer driving myself.  BTW, the most comfortable cities that I have found to drive in recently are Inverness, Scotland and Reykjavik, Iceland.  Their roads are well marked, the traffic density is light, and I had no trouble finding places to park.  Sort of like at home.

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On 7/14/2017 at 10:34 AM, Ceka Cianci said:

I live in Tennessee..

You want to talk about bad drivers?

The High school I went to,Drivers ED was first come first serve and Not everyone got in.. You don't even have to have drivers education to get your license in Tennessee.. you just have to be 16 and able to pass the written and drivers test..

I live about 10 minutes from work..Everyday on the way home I cross paths with at least 4 or 5 drivers that are over the line in my lane..Around curves they are in my lane,in the straightaways..

I can count at least 6 times out of the whole time I have been driving that an oncoming car was fully in my lane and had me each time getting ready to go off road in my Jeep..They always seemed to notice,only after I have already had enough time to decide what I was going to do,which was  go left or right of them..

It's like a lot of them have so much going on in their vehicles,But paying attention to their driving..

It's bad enough just looking out for deer and cows and whatever else that wanders out..

People in Tennessee,at least where I'm at,Drive terrible..Just terrible..

 

Just curious, where are you in Tenn? I don't remember if you said, or not. My mom was from Tenn. My grandparents, and a lot of my family lived / live in the Smithville, Watertown area. 

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On 7/14/2017 at 9:34 AM, Ceka Cianci said:

I live in Tennessee..

You want to talk about bad drivers?

The High school I went to,Drivers ED was first come first serve and Not everyone got in.. You don't even have to have drivers education to get your license in Tennessee.. you just have to be 16 and able to pass the written and drivers test..

I live about 10 minutes from work..Everyday on the way home I cross paths with at least 4 or 5 drivers that are over the line in my lane..Around curves they are in my lane,in the straightaways..

I can count at least 6 times out of the whole time I have been driving that an oncoming car was fully in my lane and had me each time getting ready to go off road in my Jeep..They always seemed to notice,only after I have already had enough time to decide what I was going to do,which was  go left or right of them..

It's like a lot of them have so much going on in their vehicles,But paying attention to their driving..

It's bad enough just looking out for deer and cows and whatever else that wanders out..

People in Tennessee,at least where I'm at,Drive terrible..Just terrible..

 

I live very close to there currently (work). I agree on the local drivers, and it became even more apparent when I recently road-tripped to San Antonio, Texas.

It was amazing, once I hit the Texas border - the maniac drivers vanished. I was there in Metro San Antonio for a whole week and drove home and saw 1 (one) crazy driver who local law enforcement were "talking to" a few miles down the road.

The drive home was the reverse, Arkansas was OK but when I reached Memphis - the maniacs were waiting.

I'm about to retire (for good this time) and I'm seriously giving thought to moving back to Texas or my birth state of Oklahoma.

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13 minutes ago, AmandaKeen said:

It was amazing, once I hit the Texas border - the maniac drivers vanished.

Hmmm did not know that. The one service Texas happily spends its negligible tax revenues on is pretty good roads -- big difference in the roads when you cross into Arkansas --  since we have to do so much driving to get anyplace in the state (I just spent five hours driving back from the beach). Maybe all that driving practice pays off, but also the chances of getting a ticket always seem pretty high. That said, driving near the border is a whole different experience. Like driving in Italy.

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When distance is an issue, it makes sense to invest in roads.  I once found myself overnight in Guymon OK with a group of students.  We were getting hungry, so I asked a local for a good place to eat.  His answer was, "Well, there a place in San Antonio I kinda like.... "

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24 minutes ago, Pamela Galli said:

Hmmm did not know that. The one service Texas happily spends its negligible tax revenues on is pretty good roads -- big difference in the roads when you cross into Arkansas --  since we have to do so much driving to get anyplace in the state (I just spent five hours driving back from the beach). Maybe all that driving practice pays off, but also the chances of getting a ticket always seem pretty high. That said, driving near the border is a whole different experience. Like driving in Italy.

I'll admit this; as a native Sooner I was prepared to look down on all things Texas :-) I was pleasantly surprised by the driving, but also by the people there being so nice. I was there for my son's graduation from USAF Basic Training, so we did all the Touristy things you'd expect when he had a town-pass (Alamo, Riverwalk, Eating Like Pigs). My Spanish vocabulary got a much-needed workout and I really enjoyed the visit. 

Considering the nature of my job, the military usually sent me to places that weren't quite so nice :-)  Don't get me started in Air Force bases either......it was kind of like "child from the slums sees The Hamptons"..... I'm happy for him :-) He's smarter than I was at his age !

Edit: There must have been one other crazy driver.  A truck hauling snakes and alligators to a local reptile-farm overturned. The had 30-ish venomous snakes escape and recovered all but 2....so I stayed out of the pool that last night "just in case"

Edited by AmandaKeen
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1 hour ago, AmandaKeen said:

but also by the people there being so nice.

Interesting! I often remark on how people with what look like pretty boring jobs -- e.g. supermarket checkers -- go out of their way to make the human interaction as pleasant as possible. Big smiles, calling people hon, chatting, etc. They make the world a little nicer for everyone they are in contact with, and thus give their jobs meaning beyond what they would otherwise have. I really appreciate that.

I am sure it's not only in Texas, but it for sure is in Texas. 

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1 hour ago, AmandaKeen said:

I live very close to there currently (work). I agree on the local drivers, and it became even more apparent when I recently road-tripped to San Antonio, Texas.

It was amazing, once I hit the Texas border - the maniac drivers vanished. I was there in Metro San Antonio for a whole week and drove home and saw 1 (one) crazy driver who local law enforcement were "talking to" a few miles down the road.

The drive home was the reverse, Arkansas was OK but when I reached Memphis - the maniacs were waiting.

I'm about to retire (for good this time) and I'm seriously giving thought to moving back to Texas or my birth state of Oklahoma.

The good roads is not a new thing. Drove or rode (it was a shared driving trip) through at least the Texas panhandle many years ago, going between New Mexico and Kansas. My father suggested the excellent roads (well paved, shoulders cleared, etc.) were probably a result of LBJ being Speaker of the House for such a long time.

I'm glad they've kept them up. I'm not as lucky: once upon a time there were excellent roads in California. These days you need patience, good tires, and even better shocks. 

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2 hours ago, Dillon Levenque said:
4 hours ago, AmandaKeen said:

 

 

I'm about to retire (for good this time) and I'm seriously giving thought to moving back to Texas or my birth state of Oklahoma.

Be sure to check out Austin.:SwingingFriends:

Edited by Pamela Galli
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2 minutes ago, Pamela Galli said:

Be sure to check out Austin. :SwingingFriends:

Austin, Minnesota, the headquarters of Hormel Foods and the home of Hormel's world famous SPAM museum.  (Spam, spam, spam, spam....)

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22 minutes ago, Rolig Loon said:

Austin, Minnesota, the headquarters of Hormel Foods and the home of Hormel's world famous SPAM museum.  (Spam, spam, spam, spam....)

But, .................I don't LIKE Spam (not true, I love spam, lol)

 

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6 hours ago, Aislin Ceawlin said:

Just curious, where are you in Tenn? I don't remember if you said, or not. My mom was from Tenn. My grandparents, and a lot of my family lived / live in the Smithville, Watertown area. 

I'm in mid south TN Around Columbia,Pulaski,Lewisburg.. I'm out in the Hills,so those are all pretty much in range..hehehe

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6 hours ago, AmandaKeen said:

I live very close to there currently (work). I agree on the local drivers, and it became even more apparent when I recently road-tripped to San Antonio, Texas.

It was amazing, once I hit the Texas border - the maniac drivers vanished. I was there in Metro San Antonio for a whole week and drove home and saw 1 (one) crazy driver who local law enforcement were "talking to" a few miles down the road.

The drive home was the reverse, Arkansas was OK but when I reached Memphis - the maniacs were waiting.

I'm about to retire (for good this time) and I'm seriously giving thought to moving back to Texas or my birth state of Oklahoma.

Where I live,I will only drive my Jeep..It has heavy duty guards on the front and back and over all the lights..

I remember one time ,there was a guy coming for me that I thought was actually trying to crash into me..

I would go right and he would go the same way,then left and he would go the same way..  Then finally I cut left and then went right right away and he was still part way in my lane when we crossed each other..I was half off the road by that time...

You never can tell what is going on in the mind of some of these guys..

I think we were just stuck in one of those dances though,like when you are walking towards someone and you both keep going side to side until someone stops and ends the dance..hehehehe

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Late to the party...YAY!

Born and raised in a tiny 1 mile by 1 mile square port(Lake Erie) village in Ohio (population when I left, a smidge over 1k)

Currently in the midwest,  just different places (varies depending on what time of year you ask, lol) :)  

I forgot all about this video..it's about my hometown, made by someone in my graduating class(yes his voice is that deep..but the song itself probably makes more sense to someone from this village, and isn't the best quality here, lol). It gives a good idea of the size of my hometown though.

There are two schools in the village. The elementary school is pre-k through 5th, while the high school is 6th through 12th(my graduating class had less than 40 people). It's quite small, but quaint. It also has the entrance into the Morton Salt mine :D 

https://www.wired.com/2016/05/venture-surreal-salt-mine-2000-feet-lake-erie/

 

 

 

Edited by Tari Landar
Add info :p
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I live in an area of South-West England called The Cotwolds. It is very pretty here, rural, with rolling hills and honey-coloured stone cottages. I feel completely at peace when I sit in my garden.

It is really nice to know where people live and I am enjoying this thread - thankyou!

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On ‎7‎/‎16‎/‎2017 at 8:14 PM, Rolig Loon said:

Austin, Minnesota, the headquarters of Hormel Foods and the home of Hormel's world famous SPAM museum.  (Spam, spam, spam, spam....)

One of the girls (they were girls when I met them; can't change how I think of them) I danced with at the one High School reunion I've gone too (20th, I think) said she was living in Austin, Minn. I'd actually spent the better part of a winter in Minnesota a year or two earlier and because I tend to explore I had been through Austin (I was based in the Twin Cities), so I said, "I've been to Austin! Been to Houston, too!" (and there's one of those in Minnesota, a bit west of La Crosse) and on one of my trips which got as far south as Iowa I'd been there, too. She just smiled, probably thinking, "Probably didn't even hear the "Minnesota" thing; idiot thinks I was talking about Texas."

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