I talked to Dad today over the phone. He said he viewed an aerial map of Kennesaw. Lots of roads, he observed. He asked me how I find my way around.
My answer was, “I can’t.”
The days of taking leisurely drives were gone when we moved here in Kennesaw, GA. In New England, our roads were originally trails and cow paths. They wound around swamps this way and that and went up and down hills. We had scenery, and sometimes we would go on a drive without any particular destination.
Here the roads wind around too, but around one another. There is also lots of traffic and rows and rows of stores. Every road looks the same. Cumulatively these streets are “spaghetti”. It is very hard to have a good sense of direction. Some I spoke with about this said they have their places to go, they know how to get to them, and that’s about it.
Another thing down here is that the roads have similar names. We’ve Cobb Place and Cobb Parkway. There’s Chastain Road, New Chastain Road, Chastain Xing, Chastain Corner Road, and a Chastain Ridge Drive. My worry is breaking down and need to call AAA or 911 not knowing enough where I am to tell them. I suppose I could use a GPS and tell them the longitude and latitude if that would be more than helpful.
In New Hampshire particularly, when they put in the 911, they asked the towns to change the names of some of their streets to avoid this confusion. The only thing then was learning and getting used to the new names, but that didn’t take too long to do.
In a way, I feel a little more trapped here than in New England. One would think the opposite considering that down here the weather is warmer and there’s no snow or ice on the roads. However, the traffic does get to me. I have to watch the lights, read the signs, and make certain I’m not too close to the car in front of me wherever I go… and so on.
This is hard to explain to folks who hadn’t visited this area. They envision majestic plantation homes, tarpaper shacks, and/or any other stereotypical southern characteristics. Kennesaw is in metro-Atlanta. It is a city. Cities have businesses and need roads to get to them.