Today turned into an awful day.
We decided to take a ride to Berkeley—we would have taken Highway 1 north but with the Slide a broken link in the road, we had no choice but to drive over Highway 92.
It was going so smoothly, hardly any traffic heading east and I was smiling when I said to Burt, “Look, no cars in the other lane.” There weren’t. There weren’t any cars.
And then, I burst out, “There must be an accident. They’re holding the traffic back.”
I only said that because there were no cars coming west. And then we saw a few, you know, as if something bad had happened and the cops were flagging a few cars through at a time.
We figured it was minor, nothing that would wreck our day. We kept driving (remember the traffic was light going in our direction) and we were so happy planning our day until going we were going uphill, and opposite Lombardi’s (closed) Spring—it was then and there that we locked into heavy traffic that wasn’t moving. Two lanes– standing still– on the hill.
We switched on the radio to traffic & weather together—and the first story was about the accident on 92. The reporter said an “oil tanker” has turned over on the highway and was blocking both lanes. The road was closed to traffic heading east, which meant us.
Maybe an hour later we reached the top of the hill, very concerned because our car was overheating. At Highway 35, or what I call Skyline, the cops had us turning right. They wouldn’t let us go any further east on 92.
People were pulling into the rest stop, double-parked, and a lot of them were looking down the mountain at the accident. We pulled in, too, to check out our engine and canceled our plans to visit Berkeley. After a kind stranger from Pacifica poured coolant in our engine, and reassured us that our car was going to be okay, we took 35 to Kings Mountain Road and on to Woodside.
While at the rest stop, I talked to a cop directing traffic and asked him if an oil tanker had turned over. “Nah,” he said, “it was a water truck.”
There’s the media for you. The thought of an oil tanker turned over kind of scared me.
Our day was ruined but in the grand scope of things, as I’ve said before, that wasn’t too bad. Just a couple of hours wasted waiting on the road because there’s no alternate route.
What does worry me is this: These days the Coastsider has become complacent, infinitely patient. Nothing bothers the Coastsider, Nothing upsets the Coastsider. Nothing phases the Coastsider. He/she has become indifferent to everything.
You know what I’m talking about.
This time I just can’t understand how the Coastsider can remain so indifferent about relying on one road while the other is undergoing repairs that they estimate will take four months, in time for Pumpkin Festival, which I’ve mentioned before.
Where are the people who are “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore?”
I have lived on the Coastside for 35 years. I have owned a home for more than 30 years and pay taxes. I have written about the Coastside for 30 years—because I love Half Moon Bay, I love Ano Nuevo, Pescadero, San Gregorio, El Granada, Princeton, Moss Beach and Montara with all my heart. I have devoted thousands of hours researching Coastside history, collecting photos and writing about the history….
I cannot remember when both Devil’s Slide and Highway 92 were closed. Today it happened. Devil’s Slide was closed and Highway 92 was temporarily closed. I wasn’t scared but I sensed “a where do we go now” feeling at the top of Highway 35—there were folks, young people, who didn’t know the area.
Can you imagine, God forbid, what kind of chaos we would face if something really serious happens within the next four months?
Where are our real Coastsider leaders?