It’s all in who you know
Published 11:00 am Wednesday, December 3, 2014
There are certain perils one experiences when moving to a new place.
There’s the worry about what doctor to use, what dentist, where to get your car serviced and more important, the best places to eat, and for someone with my style of diminishing hair totals, where to get your hair cut.
This is just a small list, and I am sure those things are on some of the less important side of the ledger opposite day care and school for the children, church and the like. But, still, I would consider them important. And, most of these questions are often best answered by those who have lived here rather than deferring to reviews online and other marketing.
And, then there’s the ever-important lesson of finding alternative routes home.
Being new to Vicksburg, I had grown very comfortable with my route home, which involves I-20 East, Route 61, etc. I had it almost down to a science.
I knew just how long it would take me on each leg of the 15-minute trip. I would even celebrate when the trip took me less than the “average” of 15 minutes.
It was a game I played, usually involving dismissing many of the suggested speed limits.
But, that was all fun and games before the Mississippi Department of Transportation decided to interfere with my life and do roadwork on I-20.
I had expected much of the work to be limited to westbound I-20, which did little to impact my life. And, as you can notice, I am strictly focused on how this has impacted me.
But, then they moved to the eastbound side, which threw a monkey wrench in my perfectly mapped out plans.
Last week, I proceeded to leave the office after 6 p.m. and head toward the entrance on Indiana Avenue. As I crossed over the interstate, I noticed the amazingly long line of cars that stretched from as far as I could see westbound and then well back to the west.
And then I remembered the subtle, baritone voice of Sheriff Martin Pace coming over the scanner in the office before I headed out saying, “if you have a choice, stay off I-20.”
So, before getting on the interstate, which up to this point had been part of my perfectly laid out path home, I whipped into a service station and consulted Siri on my iPhone.
After Siri offered routes home that all involved I-20, I decided then and there that Siri is little help when really needed.
So, I just winged it. Keeping one eye on a digital map and the other on the road (again, not a preferred driving technique) I navigated my way through this neighborhood and that neighborhood, this cut-through road and that cut-through road.
With each turn I moved ever closer to a road I was familiar and a road that would get me home.
Twenty minutes later and a few choice words that I promise I am trying to remove from my vocabulary, I made it to civilization, made it to a place I was familiar and then to my house.
The next morning, while complaining about the road work and how it was impacting my life, a co-worker gave me directions that not only would have gotten me around the road work, but might have offered a route home that is quicker each evening.
Again, it always comes back to not what you know, but who you know.
Tim Reeves is publisher of The Vicksburg Post and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 601-636-4545 ext. 122.