Now there’s a roundabout on my way to work. I’ve been working offsite for a couple weeks, driving to Raleigh, and while I loved the school, I’ll admit to looking out at the 40 traffic sometimes and feeling like a mythological figure unable to escape her tragic fate. And while I wasn’t driving my nice short easy commute, a brand new roundabout was built. You win this round, North Carolina.
I’m not saying that people here love driving and hate turn signals, but here’s the local paper, the News & Observers, noting 84 crashes after a year’s operation of the Hillsborough roundabout. The N&O has a followup story describing how “Traffic engineers realized some drivers would have trouble, so they published an illustrated navigation guide before the roundabout opened“. It makes Harold sad when I say mean things about the locals, so I’ll just post those without further comment.
“There’s a new roundabout on my commute,” I said grumpily, to a perfectly nice local person.
Right, roundabout. Sometimes I’ll say something the British way and it usually feels like a greeting from my Scottish granny. A word I must have learned from her, or heard her say, and now I say it that way too. It usually makes me very happy.
“I meant a rotary.” I tried again. But I’m not in Massachusetts, so that also got me a blank stare. “A freaking traffic circle?”
“I don’t know what that is.”
“Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s what everyone driving through it is also thinking.”