My April 2 column – “It’s only thirty miles people!” – about the hesitancy of some people to drive outside of their respective communities solicited interesting responses from readers.
Ryan and Stefanie wrote on the Pilot’s Facebook page:
“When I lived in Brookings and was working at Fred Meyer Customer Service (when the store was fairly new), I had a customer call the store and say she forgot an item in her cart. Well she lived in Harbor and DID NOT want to come all the way into Brookings to pick up her item. What?! It’s a 5 minute drive! I was dumbfounded.”
Reader Gaylene Henderson sent an email saying:
“I live in Harbor, work in Gold Beach. I drive 60 miles round trip five days a week. I never get bored because even though the scenery is the same, the sun, rain, fog, snow, longer days in summer, and shorter days in winter keep the landscape ever changing and its beauty breathtaking.
She added, “My sister lives in Los Angeles and it can take her hours to drive 30 miles. I take my time and its only 45 minutes, tops. Same with going to Crescent City. I take all the back roads and see things that you miss staying on the highway.”
Pilot Features Editor Bill Schlichting often drives from his Harbor home north to Pistol River or south to Point St. George just to take his dogs for a walk.
Sometimes it helps to get an outsider’s perspective, such as this one from Laura, of Fontana, Calif.:
“As a future resident of Brookings, who has lived both SoCal and NorCal, I can relate to your dismay at locals not wanting to leave their town. We drive for 30 minutes to church and 20 minutes to a large shopping mall or theaters. The later it gets in the day, the more traffic and the longer it takes to get from place to place. We are so looking forward to 30 minute drives (up the coast and around the state, as well) without major traffic issues!”
Gold Beach resident Steve Foster wrote:
“Since I also grew up in the Los Angeles area, the answer is obvious: “Why go anywhere?
“When you live in a place like this, you have everything! Gold Beach has a beach, a sunset and a river. That’s all one needs. Do you really want to waste fuel, breathe smog and not trust the person standing next to you? Well that’s Los Angeles.
“Since the weather is sometimes unbearable, it’s all about snuggling up with the family or sitting and laughing at the dinner table eating some good food. I guess you would say it’s all about love.
“Scott, remember there is ‘No Hurry in Curry’ – unless a tsunami is on the way. Life is good.”
Les, of Brookings, offered this observation:
“There are three types of people: homebodies, adventurers and everyone else in between.”
The homebodies, Les said, are those happy to stay close to home, but don’t have a clue as to what they are missing.
The adventurers, he said, are “naturally curious and excited by their discoveries; always (looking) for new and wonderful places and things ...”
Yes! He’s absolutely right.
Too many people are content to sit on the couch and watch TV. There is so much to see and enjoy within a 30-mile radius of our little towns. Get out there and find out what you’ve been missing!