Washington to Washington

My journey from Seattle, WA to Washington, DC. When we moved here we began to discover the differences from the west coast and the east coast--and I'm not talking about the music. It's a fun look at the differences and prespectives from one Washington to the other.

Friday, November 17, 2006

A Straight Line

The closest distance between two points is a straight line. Sure, that makes sense, EXCEPT when you are jaywalking.

Around my office building, jaywalking is about as common as Starbucks coffee. I understand that in most States jaywalking is against the law. If fact, a pedestrian automatically gives up their right-a-way when they do not use the crosswalk when crossing a street, with certain expectations like blindness.

Well, Maryland would make bundles over here!

What the scariest part is people still jaywalk during rainstorms, night, fog, etc. With how crazy everyone drives around here, it worries me that someone may get hit.

A few weeks ago, a 25-year-old jaywalker was hit and killed by a car.

Instead of assuming everyone are idiots around here, I attribute the jaywalking to the intense rhythm of DC.

Everyone is always in hurry. They are in a hurry to get to work, to the gym, getting their kids, to the mall, to the movies, etc. It’s a wonder that I don’t hear more about jaywalkers getting hit by cars. Everyone is in such in a hurry that they can’t wait 60 seconds for the light. 60 seconds between life and death. That’s it. One minute. It took someone dying to make people wake up.

For about a week.

At work, I am made fun of a lot because of my relaxed “Northwest” ways; like waiting for the light. In fact, I am one of the only ones who make their deadlines and often get my work done early, but I never rush. I plan. I don’t expect the team to redo their work because I did not do my job correctly. Moreover, I don’t expect for a driver to stop because I’m crossing through the median. Maybe if we all plan, we don’t have to be in a hurry.

Sometimes the straight line isn’t the safest path.


Anonymous M said...

At least you have proper crosswalks to use. Here in Macau - they are more like a suggestion - there are no lights to go along with the painted stripes on the road. You just take a deep breath and step off the curb - hopefully cars and scooters (the real danger) will stop or at least slow down, but they will NOT stop while you are still standing on the curb.

Embrace your crosswalks with lights - love them - love America for having them!

10:55 PM  
Blogger Aiden's Mommy said...

I'm still laughing at Monique's comment. ;)

12:02 AM  
Anonymous m said...

Yes, it's Human Frogger!

5:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok – the being a pedestrian thing and trying to cross the street here is totally out of control. First let me start with letting you know that this week in the news Macau was named one of the top 10 most congested cities in the world. Yeah us!

We went to Dim Sum lunch at the resort right across the street from us. You’d think it would be easy to just walk next door right? Ha! Welcome to Macau. First you have to cross a road (surprise no crosswalks) that is four lanes in each direction. Getting there was a bit of a challenge, but trying to return after lunch was more of an adventure – a dangerous one. So we finish lunch and it is raining outside which makes the situation even better. There is so much construction happening on this little stretch of road that there are no sidewalks so you have to walk in the street avoiding the construction vehicles that move around and back up and I swear are really trying to run you over for points. So you have to walk in the middle of the road while trying to avoid the vehicles racing down this road. We finally get to the part where the road dividers break so we can cross from one side of danger to the other. As soon as we go to cross through a bus pulls in front of us, blocking the cross through holding up a car, a scooter and us pedestrians. You know I’m from LA and I know traffic, but never in my life have I been in a traffic jam that included a bus, a car and a scooter while I was on foot!

I miss America and those crosswalks that only you use in DC. I’m going to move there and we’ll cross together ok?

2:36 AM  

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