Friday, July 31, 2009

The Road Less Traveled

Dear New England,

This letter has been a long time coming.

You know I love you. We started our relationship on shaky ground with the schizophrenic weather patterns and the funny accents, but when I discovered your fall foliage, your quainter than quaint little villages, your plethora of Dunkin' Donuts, I said to myself, "I think this relationship could work."

But there's something I gotta ask you, something I need an answer to.
What the heck is up with your roads and road signage?

Between road signs that are placed on the opposite side of the turn, non-existent road signs and highway signs placed just at the exit or after (when the turn is too late), it makes me think you don't want me here.

Today was the final straw.

You see New England, a friend told me I didn't have to go all the way to Boston for good cannoli. I could go to the North End Deli in Plainville which is just off of Route 152 which is off of Robert Toner Blvd. A mere 20 minutes from my house!

Like any good New Englander, I started my trip with a stop at Dunkin' Donuts. And here was my omen: a sour coffee. I should have seen it for what it was but, because I didn't, I tried to remedy the situation. I bought another coffee to mix with the sour one rather than concede defeat; retreat to fight another day. (Am I being melodramatic here? I mean, we're talking about pastries after all.)

I forgot the Google directions at home but, in my mind, it seemed so simple. I confirmed the directions with a friend who lived in the area. She said, "Sure, just bang a left and then another left and it's right there."

Confident in my information and in our knowledge of each other, I took off. I turned onto Robert Toner Boulevard. You know I'm a cautious person, New England. I like confirmation that I'm on the correct road. So after a few miles, I started to look for street signs that would indicate the road I'm on. I find a sign at the cross street that only has the name of the cross street itself, not the one I'm on. As a matter of fact, it had two signs on one pole for "Kevin Koska Drive," as if there was a disagreement whether there should blue signs or green ones and it was decided to use both. As I passed each cross street I looked for confirmation but there was nothing. It was as if you, New England, were telling me, "You should know the street you're on." I've also noticed that sometimes, you put the street signs on the right side for a street that is on the left. Is it not a little dangerous to be looking to the right side when you need to be turning left?

Befuddled, I went into one of the three Dunkin' Donuts that I passed to ask directions. The girl inside told me she was good at directions. This, in hind sight, I should have seen as another portend of misfortune. She said, "Follow Landry to the end."

I followed Landry. I stayed straight. I did.

But at some point, I saw I was no longer on Landry. Finally, there was a street sign but only to tell me Landry had left me. Going straight, no turns, the road changed. Did I enter a time/space continuum? You can't just up and change a road name in mid stream. Or direction for that matter. I tried to follow this new road to the end but the last block was one way in the opposite direction I was traveling. Same name but different direction. How can I get to the end if the road is against me?

Now, traveling back and forth to find out where I am, to see where Landry has disappeared to, to somehow find Route 152 (which is supposed to be a major route), I return to my starting point with 1/4 tank less of gas, frustrated and more importantly, cannoli-less.

Really New England, I need to know. We don't seem to be communicating clearly. I need to know where I am with you.

Love always,
Domestic Goddess


shella said...

Bwhahaha..that;s what you get for not asking said friend who tipped you off to go with you... even if said friend gets lost in a brown bag....
Your story is quite a tragedy I must say tho! No Cannoli?! TRAGIC!

Bo said...

Welcome to New England. Now go away.

Kelly said...

I don't understand the problem...didn't your friend tell you what used to be there? What kind of friend leaves out vital "used-ta-be" information?

Everyone knows that in RI, the main streets don't need to be labeled. That's how they keep their cannolis to themselves.