Happy Trails, Part 25

The trail along this retirement journey isn’t entirely, um, happy.

I won’t throw up my hands, I won’t surrender, I won’t cease exploring new adventures across our vast continent. I’ll have to learn some patience as we continue to battle individual communities’ unique methods of controlling and directing traffic flow.

We recently found ourselves guided — mistakenly, I believe — onto an express lane of Interstate 95 between Washington, D.C., and our RV campsite in suburban Virginia. How in this world we got into that lane is a mystery to both of us.

Traffic was stalling terribly in the “regular lanes” of southbound traffic; meanwhile, we sailed along in the express lane with virtually no one else in our lanes.

We were able to exit at Woodbridge. I might get some form letter from the Virginia Department of Transportation. It might contain a traffic ticket for all I know.

I’m not sure how to handle a ticket. Do I pay the fine? Do I challenge it? I’m tempted to challenge a fine if it comes. I think it’s an easy case to win. I’ll await something to come in the mail.

We are learning that states have different methods of striping their highways. Some of them advise motorists in plenty of time about lane changes, or closure; others of them aren’t as careful.

My task now is to get ready for sudden changes in traffic flow.

It also is incumbent on me to stop whining about getting diverted by mistake along a route that takes us out of the way. Hey, we’re retired these days! Why worry if an unintended detour keeps us on the road a little longer?

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