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    Welcome to Flagstaff  echo $newRAM;
    added Fri December 19 2003 at 2:56 PM
    about 22 hours after I set out, I finally arrived safe at home. Well, I finally arrived safe in Flagstaff. I no longer know what to claim as home.

    It's actually a nine or ten hour drive (I was hoping for eight), but my mom convinced me to stop in Page and get a motel room there. I was rather opposed to this concept (I just wanted to be done driving), but in the end she won out. The only reason why she did win was because she promised to pay me back for the cost of the room.

    I've officially decided that I dislike driving at night. I get too tired on the interstate (you just keep driving and driving and driving and there's no scenery to keep you awake), and I get too freaked out on the highway. Something about bright lights coming straight at me at 130 mph and missing by a couple feet just isn't cool. The only thing that kept me sane was concentrating on the tail-lights of the person in front of me. I don't get as scared during the day for some reason.

    So now I need to get started working on my big website project. I've been telling myself when I get home that I'll start on it, but it seems so big and overwhelming. Hopefully it will all be done by the time I leave again on the 3rd or 4th.

    Arizona drivers and caravaning  echo $newRAM;
    added Fri December 19 2003 at 3:10 PM
    I think that Utah drivers have been getting a bad rap. They pull some pretty stupid stunts sometimes, but at least they aren't maliscious. Or maybe my problem isn't Arizona vs Utah drivers, but interestate vs highway driving.

    The single most annoying (and, I think dangerous) thing to do on a two-lane highway is to speed up when somebody tries to pass you or when a passing lane opens up. It's already dangerous to pass. When you see a car coming from the other direction, they are travelling toward you at about 130 mph (faster if you or they are speeding). Then, it takes two or three times as long to pass because the clown decided to accelerate as soon as you pulled into the other lane.

    I was following behind one person for about 10 minutes (should've been about 2 minutes) that would go about 10-15 mph over the speed limit any time that there was a passing lane, but would slow down to about 5 mph below the speed limit when it was a no-passing zone. I knew that I wanted to pass him, but every time I was given the opportunity, he was going to fast. I ended up passing him without a passing lane (passing zone, but no passing lane, meaning I pulled across a broken yellow line). By the time I pulled back into my own lane, I was going about 85 mph. In a 65 mph zone. The jerk kept speeding up faster and faster, but I had to get around him somehow.

    That same scenario played itself out about 4 times today, and I didn't have any problems with it yesterday. I don't see why people get so offended by others passing. Personally, I love it when somebody passes me, because that means they get to take the lead. I feel much more comfortable when somebody else leads, because then they have a chance of seeing a cop first (when you're going well over the speed limit, that can be important), and also so that I have a few more seconds to respond to something in the road. If they swerve to miss a piece of tire, then I miss it too.

    I've said before that I'm a social speeder. I'll go just as fast as the person in front of me (as long as they are going at least five over the speed limit, or else I pass them). If they go 85 in a 75, then I go 85. If they go 90, well, I go 90. We'll stop there, just to give my mom a little peace of mind. For about 3 hours last night, there were three of us all going about 15-20 over the speed limit. I call it caravaning, my brother calls it a game. Whatever you call it, it saved me about 45 minutes of driving.