Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Reasons to Be Late In Astoria


Having always been punctual I anticipate everything when I go places and try to give myself at least 20 minutes head start. Here on the coast there is a different sense of time where late is a way of life. It is rare that anything starts on time here because the late factor is built into nearly every function. Sometimes being early can work to ones advantage.

Lateness causes a brief explanation that is generally understood and approved. Here is a list of pre-approved excuses for being late:

1. I got stuck behind a school bus. Out on the narrow country roads there are few spots where a school bus can pull over to let traffic by, so one has to hang back while the bus stops at every house and driveway for a country mile or two. Good for a 20 minute delay.

2. Water in the road. You know that anyone coming from Cannon Beach or down Hwy 202 during high tide after a heavy rain is going to be late. Good for up to a four hour delay.

3. Slide. Mud slides are common on Hwy 202, Lewis and Clark Road and Highway 30. Good for a one hour delay.

4. Chip Truck. This means another chip truck flipped by the curve west of the John Day Boat Ramp. Good for a two hour delay.

5. Black ice. People here still don’t fully understand how to drive on ice. Good for a two to four hour delay.

6. Bridge was up. There are three major draw bridges in the Astoria/Warrenton area. Each causes the occasional ten minute delay, however some how roll up to make for a 20 to 30 minute delay for traffic. If you time it right you can be part of two bridge openings from the same boat and get delayed for an hour.

7. Cows. When they are in the road drivers have to stop and often try to herd them back into their confines. This is fun to watch when people do this not knowing the nature of cows. Good for a 30 minute delay.

8. Elk. They don't even have to be in the road. They can be grazing in a field and people have to stop and gawk. That's a 20 minute delay.

A skillful chronically late person can combine several of the excuses above and not show up at all.

7 Comments:

Blogger Beth said...

Only the black ice excuse would work here.
I am chronically early - good manners or compulsive behaviour?

4:49 AM  
Blogger Auntie said...

Compulsively early myself. I prefer to think of it as paranoia. Don't want anything to start unless I am there.

6:39 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I have to say, one thing I don't miss from living in Astoria is getting stuck behind the school bus!

Here we just have a multitude of other excuses.

7:01 AM  
Blogger darev2005 said...

About the only viable excuses I have here are accidents and road construction. Seems there's always a drunken hillbilly wrapped around a telephone pole or putting up a new one. Good thing we got lots of both.

8:34 AM  
Blogger Tango said...

Here too we have accidents and road construction. I avoid all interstates if possible. I am chronically early. Sometimes it's a challenge going to my part time night job since it's a single lane highway for 8 miles, especially when there is a young lady jogging on the side of that road in the late afternoon. Then traffic goes down to a crawl and I've noticed that the person slowing everyone down doesn't necessarily have to be a male.

8:47 AM  
Anonymous Ginger said...

A few other reasons out on 202: Log trucks, Sunday drivers/sight see'ers, fallen trees, unexpected snow on the mountain...it snowed yesterday! The cows being out...that could be MY cows (although I have put many a neighbors cows and horses back to pasture), only realizing that they are out when I get down the road and spot one out of the corner of my eye, slamming on the brakes...all dressed up (nice jeans and clean shoes :)...and tromping through mud to put them away...not leaving much time to go back to the house to change pants and shoes. It's a good thing cows taste so good.

12:13 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Beth, don't tell me a Canadian is fearful of black ice.

Auntie, Paranoia or nosiness?

OC I plan my driving around school buses. When they are out, I'm not.

Darev,Funny how utility poles are always on the bend of a road.

Tango, Too bad its not restricted to a track.

Ginger, that gave me a good laugh. Cows don't care what you are wearing.

9:48 PM  

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