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Broken

So by now everyone has pretty much noticed that the Bay Bridge is shut down. It so happens that Brent and I were among the last people to cross as we were returning from our anniversary date in San Francisco.

When we reached the east end of the bridge, the CalTrans sign said the bridge was closed. At first we thought it was some kind of mistake, because clearly we had just crossed it: how could it be closed? But then we saw traffic turning around at the toll plaza and the cars driving back along the approaches. The radio confirmed that the bridge was closed because of a snapped something or other.

There is something about seeing cars, lots of them, driving in what I know is the wrong direction, that unsettles me. Brent suggested that my rising anxiety might have been caused by the fact that I don’t expect bridges to fail. An interesting theory, but I stopped believing in the infallibility of bridges in 1989. It might be that I can no longer pretend that the chaos isn’t there when cars drive on the wrong side of the road, when strong metal snaps, when anything can happen.

When the engineers finish welding or shoring up or whatever it is that they do to make the bridge better, I wish they’d come fix my sense of security. It’s broken.

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( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
happy_potterer
Oct. 28th, 2009 08:34 pm (UTC)
I heard about it last night on the traffic report. "Bridge cable snaps, striking several cars" sounded like something that belonged on the news report instead, but it just went by like "mattress in the left lane" or "accident now moved over to the shoulder, still causing backups to the A Street exit." Even the unflappable DJ did an auditory double-take.
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