Friday, February 20, 2009

We saw this on Saturday

Nice innit?

It is Slough Town Centre, and that road is the A4. There were road works on it when we were there too.

Now I know accidents will happen and I can be as sympathetic as the next person to anyone caught up in an accident, just so long (obviously) as it does not inconvenience me.

So there we are, me and Reidski, heading West. 'Cornwall young man, and don't spare the horses'. We were just out of London, on the M4 and only about another 200 miles to go - hooray! Lovely clear, dry day. Not many lorries on the road. Splendid safe driving conditions......

I hear something on the radio about a multi vehicle pile up on the West bound M4 at Junction 7 for Slough.

Uh oh.

We see Sign Number One that tells us there is a hold up ahead and we can expect a delay of around 20 minutes. "That's OK" says I. "I can cope when I know roughly how long we will be stuck for." We see Sign Number Two that tells us the M4 is closed at Junction 6. We surmise that Sign Number One had lied to us in the manner of the sadistic dentist who says 'This won't hurt a bit' when he means it will hurt a lot. I consulted the map and we decided that it would be better to come off the motorway at Junction 5 and travel on the A4 until we had passed the scene of the accident. We thought that even more as we saw the completely stationary traffic queuing from Junction 5 as we left the M4. We had definitely made The Right Decision. Smug Gits Were Us.

But not for long.

Where do you suppose all that queuing traffic was being diverted to when they eventually got to Junction 6?

Would you be surprised to learn they were being diverted on to the A4 up ahead of us?

Which goes through Slough town centre.
And which is currently being dug up for road repairs.
And which is very very busy on a Saturday morning anyway without the benefit of all west bound motorway traffic being diverted right through the middle of Slough Town Centre.

Think of the worst traffic jam you have ever been in and multiply it by 12 and you may come close to understanding just how bad that traffic was. If I had not finally come up with an escape route via Windsor we would probably still be in Slough Town Centre now. In fact I am sure I caught something on the news about emergency food parcels being delivered to motorists stranded since last Saturday morning on the A4 in Slough.

No prizes for guessing what poem I have had in my head ever since Saturday.

So whoever once said that part of the pleasure of going somewhere is the getting there lied as blatantly as Motorway Sign Number One. But somehow - when one arrives at a place as beautiful as this

it does all seem worthwhile.


Yorkshire Pudding said...

You were staying in Boscastle? Does that mean you are into white water rafting?

Fire Byrd said...

I spent my honeymoon to the first mr byrd in Boscastle. Lovely place

Jay said...

I feel for you! We got caught in a similar jam on the way home from town a few months back. What passes for the ring road was completely closed, so they diverted all through traffic, plus all traffic to the affected local areas, along the main road north where there are always HUGE tailbacks at that time of the night already. It all ends at one little roundabout, which happens to be the only way into our village from the south. I was tempted to get out and walk!

I'm glad you got to Cornwall - it sure does look worth it!

Moo said...

Beautiful view!

I forgot to tell you...Keane were only drinking in my ex local pub last weekend - gutted!

Oh, but I did meet Russell Brand on Wednesday evening, beautiful man....

J.J said...

YP - had we been there when the floods hit we could have gone white water rafting in our car.

Fire Byrd - it is beautiful isn't it?

Jay - it just does one's head in doesn't it? But it was totally worth it.

Moo - oh my god! Wow!!! And as for Mr Brand!!! How did that happen? I hope you kept him at a safe distance!!!

Karen said...

I was once stuck in a traffic jam near Birmingham before the M6 toll existed. It took us an hour to drive one mile.

I also got stuck in a bad traffic jam on a VERY hot day in August somewhere in Oxfordshire I think. There had been a very bad accident going the other way so of course everyone in our direction had slowed down to have a good gawp. Fortunately it had been cleared up by the time we got to the site.

Also we decided once to go on the motorway to get to other side of Carlisle rather than go through the town centre, which would obviously busy and the M6 in Cumbria only usually has about 10 cars on it. We were very wrong. Can't remember what the hold up was but it took us about an hour to travel two junctions!

J.J said...

Karen - they all sound absolutely horrendous. I can never understand why people slow down to look at accidents - vile.