Denise Goldberg's blog

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Dark & quiet road, with tolls

Ah, a very early morning drive to LAX...

I had a 7:30 (yes AM!) flight, and I left Dana Point at 4:30. Yes, I left myself a little bit of extra time, knowing that I had to refuel and return a rental car. I took I-5 to route 73 (which is a toll road) to I-405, even though at that early hour on a Sunday morning I really didn't need to worry about traffic.

The road signs were in the center of the road (that is, between the north-bound and south-bound lanes) instead of on the right. I suppose that makes some amount of sense, but given the width of the road it would have made more sense to have the signs centered over the driving lanes. I have to admit that I found the signs almost impossible to read. As it turns out, I believe the problem was caused not by the positioning on the left but by the height of the signs. The signs were hung at a such a high level that normal headlights didn't catch them. It was only if I flicked my high beams on that the lights brought the letters on the sign to visibility. Hmmm... I wonder if that was just a "Denise problem", or if other drivers have the same reaction that I did.

Funny story about the tolls though... Route 73 has what I would consider a pretty expensive toll for a relatively short road. One sign said the toll was $3.50, and another sign said $4.25. I don't know if the toll is time-of-day-related; it could be. So I see the sign saying $3.50, and I put a five dollar bill in the slot. Oh. Only 3 coins came out in change, I guess the toll is $4.25. Nope - it was $3.50. My 3 coins? A Sacajawea dollar plus 2 quarters. I have to admit that I never see the dollar coins around home. I suppose using them for change in a toll machine makes sense. And while I'm happy not to be walking around with lots of dollar coins in change, it seems a shame that this very attractive coin does not see more use.

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