Thursday, May 31, 2007

Welcome To Maine

This post is dedicated and specifically addressed to the nice man who inadvertently got in the wrong lane entering the Maine Turnpike this afternoon. He needs my help. I must take time out of my busy schedule, set aside the napping and complaining about having the Monkey Pox to assist him in better understanding how we do things around these parts. Fiber content to follow. I thank you for your patience.

Dear Guy In The White Car Who Meant Well And Was Just Trying To Be Honest,

Hi there and thank you for choosing the Great State Of Maine for your weekend get-away. We surely do appreciate your tourist dollars and how you give us something a little different to look at on the way home from work or shopping. But, you would do well to study up a bit before trying to do something tricky like get on the toll highway. Clearly you need a little tutorial before attempting this feat again. Let me see what I can do to help you out.

Maine is on the EZ Pass system. This is a handy way for those of us who commute regularly to avoid having to stop for that pesky ten seconds that it takes to hand change to the toll guy. We can use any lane we darned well please because we have paid for the privilege. Well, assuming, that is, that we have a plan that covers the entire Turnpike. Which I do not. And this has led to some problems at times, I will admit, but we are talking about you not me right now so let's just stay focused, shall we?

Now, where was I? Ah, yes! EZ Pass... Now, the lanes are pretty clearly marked. The one with the giant sign that is bigger than my entire condo which says, "EZ Pass only, all others prohibited" is for us. We are the Chosen Ones. But, I can understand how you might miss it. You do, after all, have to look up slightly. It's an easy mistake. And the Maine scenery being what it is, I can certainly understand how you could get distracted and all. I'm sure that this is the explanation for your having found yourself in the lane that is designated for those of us with the electronic pass to freedom. I did pause to wonder, though, how one with a New York license plate has never once been confronted with an EZ Pass situation...

I applaud your honesty in refusing to pass through the toll gate to the open road that is the Maine Turnpike. You are truly a gentleman of the Olde School who does not like to take advantage of the taxpayers here in our lovely state. Very thoughtful of you.

But, your decision to stop rather than go created something of a problem for those of us where were very, very tired after a full day of teaching, an unexpected long meeting after school and the need to purchase the bribes for the children who managed to behave themselves for most of this week. We were kind of expecting to just drive through the magic scanner thingie and be on our way. We were unprepared for your brake lights. We were even less prepared when you decided to back up and try to do the right thing by going to a regular toll lane. The seven of us who were behind you were left to back up frantically and take on something of an "every man for himself" sort of mentality. Again, I see how you meant well. But, to say that your plan backfired would be an understatement. Big time...

May I offer a suggestion? It may sound radical, but I can assure you that it does, in fact, work. Next time you are in this position, why don't you just drive through? Now, bear with me here...I know that this sounds like a caper of the most nefarious sort. But, I can assure you that the Maine State Police are really rather busy and that they are not monitoring every single toll booth. And, if it is really bothering you, you can call the Maine Turnpike Authority at your earliest convenience, confess your sin and offer to make it right. They will be eager to help you. You don't even want to know how many times I goofed and went through the wrong lane back when I was driving a rental during my car repair woes. Trust me. As one who was raised in the fine tradition of guilt as a means for ensuring better behavior in the future, it is easier to live with the knowledge that you have snuck onto the highway than you might think.

I also know (by virtue of the fact that I work with someone who was recently in this situation) that it is far less expensive to pay a ticket for accidentally going through the wrong lane than it is to be charged with obstructing traffic. Or causing an accident. That is rather expensive as well.

So, dear sir, to recap: Your intentions? Noble. Your actions? Maddening and rather dangerous. The solution? Suck it up, drive through and deal with the guilt that will plague you for far less time than you think. A better option? Look up. There is a sign that will tell you which lane is open to you.

And, as always, I hope you enjoy your visit. Please feel free to roam our state to your heart's content. Just see if you can't do it while going forward. Backward isn't working for you. Or me. Or anyone else...

Best wishes for a lovely vacation,
The Sheep

When not advising the tourists on the best way to handle dangerous situations like going through a tollbooth, I sometimes like to pick up my mail. And I'm so glad that I took a minute to do that today. Lookee what came for little ol' me from Wooly Wonka!!!

New spindle, new fiber...does it get any better????? Methinks not.
I placed this order on Sunday. Got it today. If you factor in that this package came almost from the other side of the country and that Monday was a holiday, you have some idea just how quickly Anne ships out those orders. I immediately began spinning up some of the shetland that Cathy sent me a while back when I first started showing signs of becoming all sickly and stuff. I do love having sample packs with which to play...the idea I'm working on is a little combination of a thinly spun silk/alpaca blend in deep dark blue and a thick and thin silvery shetland. Plied together, I think I will have something almost boucle-ish! And if it doesn't work then we simply un-ply and try something new. Either way, I've been playing with the spindles and this is going to make for a good day.
That's of my vast knowledge base to others and optimistically experimenting with the fibers. And, yes, I am back on the narcotic cough medicine again.
Why do you ask?


Anonymous said...

Ahhhh..... summer.... the joys of tourist drivers.... Why do people pick the wrong time and event to be honest?

trek said...

We here at chez trek applaud your concern for the visitors to the great state of Maine and your efforts to prevent traffic accidents.

Do you do house calls?

Ronni said...

My goodness what a gorgeous spindle! No wonder you needed it. I think maybe I need to go look and see what I might need too. :wanders off whistling innocently:

Denise said...

What a gorgeous spindle! I'm sure the yarn that you'll produce on it will be equally as lovely. This can only help with your healing process!

I'm just catching up on all that I've missed in the blog world in my absence. I'm so sorry to hear that you've had a recurrence of the nasty Monkey Pox (we hates the monkey pox!).

take care and be well!

Jeanne said...

Next time, sic one of these on the bad tourist drivers:

A Cat for Sheepie

That is a beautiful spindle, and some fast service, too.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry you have to deal with the tourists before your vacation starts. I have traveled through the state of NY and they have the same sort of thing on their toll roads. The guy must have let his brain go somewhere else on vacation.
Lovely new spindle you've got there.

Beth said...

Your spindle is beautiful! And the driver was really fortunate nothing bad happened.

Cathy said...

Love the spindle. But then, Anne and Dave are nothing but trouble, if you ask me. I am NOT looking at spindles.


Good advice for the tourist.

Sheila said...

Right now we have environmentalists trying to ward off the building of toll roads in our city. I hope they succeed, although I think it is inevitable that they'll be built : (
Watch out for those pedestrian tourists!!

Anonymous said...

Oh mylanta! I am sorry for the tourist from MY state! You know, we have EZ Pass lanes here in New York, so I am surprised he missed it.

I love your new spindle and fiber! I think we need to meet up. I really want to learn spindle spinning.

big geek beth

Anonymous said...

You've just gotta love those tourist drivers! I'm already getting cranky every time I get in my car and it hasn't even really begun.

Another spindle?! Do you think if I got a pretty spindle, I might finally be able to spin on it?

Debby said...

Dear Mr. New York tourist,

Having chosen the wrong toll lane in your state once before, due to mass confusion of directions, I can assure you that the police will not come after you and pull you over for jumping through the toll booth. I can assure you that the EZ cameras will EZily read your license plate, and send you a wee bill in the mail for the toll. If you pay within 30 days, there is no extra charge. Everyone is safe, and The Powers That Be have gotten their money out of you. Were you really worried they wouldn't??

mehitabel said...

Gotta love tourists. Now, out here in SoCal, we have one toll road--and so 99.9% of us drivers wouldn't know an EZpass lane from a fried green tomato. We have "freeways" which are free of everything except room to drive--sooo crowded and nasty! Ah, for the Great State of Maine!

crzjane said...

I love that spindle! That fiber looks pretty good too. Stay home (that way you might be safe from the tourists) spin and sleep. Sounds good, wish I could do that!

lobstah said...

Ha ha ha...last summer my bf was totally spaced out and inadvertently drove through the EZ Pass lane. He put the brake on for a second and then said "screw it" and kept going.

We were really disappointed b/c our friends told us we would get a warning by mail with a photo of the back of our car and we never got one :( I wanted that photo, darnit!

Annie said...

Unbelievable! What was he thinking?!