Monday, September 10, 2012

Only in the Country #2

     Would you know what to expect of you saw a sign like this?  We see them quite often on our rural roads. I can think of at least 5 different one lane bridges on country roads within 30 miles of our town.  Our roads are not very busy, so you don't often have to "deal" with them.
     The one lane bridge has become a greatly debated topic among county officials. I'm sure the original reason for the one lane bridge was to save money. Now, there is more concern for safety, and the time spent "waiting" at one of these bridges (like there's really that much traffic on them!).
     After passing the above sign, you will soon see this:

     The picture doesn't quite do justice to what a one lane bridge looks like. They are rather thin and are only wide enough to accommodate one vehicle width at a time. The sign does however give you the appropriate directions on how to respond to a one lane bridge. When we country folks approach one of these and see another car headed for the bridge from the other direction, we respond in a number of  different ways.  The daredevils will try and beat one another to the bridge, often playing "chicken" to see who will give in and slow down first.  The timid drivers will slow down, or even stop to let the other driver cross first. The polite gentlemen will sit patiently and wave the other driver across.  Neighbors will meet half way, get out of their cars and have a little chat on the bridge.  I heard once of a man and woman who met on a one lane bridge and stopped bumper to bumper.  The man hollered out "I don't back up for idiots!"  The woman immediately replied, " I do!"   and quickly backed up .....but you'll get that in a small town.

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