SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


This Cannot Be Happening!
By Valerie Cooper


November 09, 2006
Thursday PM

It is to invoke all the ambiance of a Fellini film to attempt to drive to town anymore. I cannot function this way.

There is ONE highway, and no alternative routes. I am told that the legal limit to make drivers wait for construction in the state of Alaska is 20 minutes, but I am clocking well up to half an hour lately. More and more I see people just give up and turn around, as I had to on one of my earlier trips (attempted) this morning.

I am in two classes IN town, each of which I am allowed 3-4 absences (relatively) and I FAIL the class. Three tardies equal ONE absence, so do the math.

My car is constantly covered with mud and the paint job ruined. The tires which were pretty new a year ago need to be replaced from hitting huge chuckholes in the road, which were never there before. The amount of time and money that I personally need to spend on gas as I "await permission to drive down the road" is uncounted.

I don't even know what they are doing! Had no opportunity to vote on it, and aside from an occasional radio blurb about how whoever they are "thank you for your patience"... I have no idea when they will stop how many cars where, nor for how many minutes.

I realize that THEY are being paid to do some job. I am not being paid for not being able to function alongside these construction projects. It is a total gamble as to whether or not I will be able to keep to any time schedule for responsibilities in MY life, as I so courteously wait oh so patiently with the 'Barbie smile' pasted on my face like some sort of regressed happy monkey for everybody!

That's it! I can't function!

Even as I type I could not possibly have gotten home early enough to do what i had to do, and make it back to town on time for my class.

It could be worse, and it WILL. Just wait for the snow to wreak further havoc as the asbestos infested mud further splits the concrete, and the mud gushing down the sides of the rock candy mountain with no roots of trees to hold it back.

I do NOT mean to sound UNcivic-minded, it's just that I want these people to know that I - for one - cannot function. Truth.

When they wrote that 20 minute construction wait into law whenever, they most likely were in Anchorage, or even Juneau, where there were DETOURS that people could take. When there is nowhere else to go, on an island, it has become intolerable for this outta towner. If i manage to make it through college classes at this rate, it will be a miracle. And so must i pray for a miracle?

Valerie Cooper
Ketchikan, AK

About: "student/probate estate rep/ single mother"




Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


Send A Letter -------Read Letters

E-mail the Editor at

Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska