9 Risky Decisions Made Daily In Acadiana
Risky decisions (many of them traffic-related) are made every day, and if you live in Acadiana, some of these will ring true. If you've lived in Acadiana long enough, many of these will be a part of your history. From construction nightmares to old-wives tales, be aware that every day you make decisions that are more important than you know.
So, you're headed East to visit New Orleans, maybe hit a beach further along the gulf coast, or just headed to Baton Rouge to catch a Tigers game. I-10 seems like the logical choice, right? Well, anyone who has ever been parked on the basin bridge will beg to differ. As the third longest bridge in the United States, it's also one of the least convenient places to have an accident/breakdown/otherwise not move. With the alternative being US-190, many people roll the dice and take the risk to get across the basin safe and sound.
It was just a dream many years ago, and it finally became a reality. Another way to cross the Vermilion river became an option as Camellia was extended all the way to Verot School Road (another one on the list). Now, traffic will be eased along Ambassador and Pinhook and you'd be able to get where you're going on time. That is, unless, repairs need to be made. Another round of renovations was recently completed, and fingers crossed this will be the last time (at least for a while) that orange cones will be seen down the road.
Don't get me wrong, the improvements to Verot School Road will be well worth the pain the area is experiencing now. The lack of left-turn lanes backs up the road in either direction, but one of the most nerve-wracking elements of the construction is the steep drop-offs on either side of the construction zone. Of all the businesses I feel sorry for on Verot it has to be the car wash that has the dirt path leading to and from the business. Nothing says clean, fresh car than coming out of a wash and driving down a dirt road. Eyes on the road at all times here, and yet another reminder not to text and drive.
Seriously, there are times where I'd rather make the block than try to make a left turn onto Johnston St. If you're not 100% certain in your car's ability to go when you need, just keep working your way to a light. It's not worth the potential accident. Adding insult to injury are drivers that use the turning lane as a 'bonus lane' with their mindset being 'I'll be turning eventually'. Just can't win for losing there.
I know what you're thinking, this is common sense, right? If I come to a complete stop, I can take a right on red, even at an intersection with traffic cameras. Sure, you go ahead and do that. Just make sure you put your vehicle in PARK for a second before making that turn. Otherwise it'll be a nightmare Glamor Shots session where you don't get to pick your photo. Rolling stops do not equal stops, so be absolutely certain you've stopped and can explain to a judge in court.
It's that time of year, when people decide whether to purge or not purge, do I have enough potatoes, did anyone see the newspaper? Along those lines comes the age-old question, what to do with the straight-tailed crawfish? It has been debated for years, with many saying 'don't eat the straight-tailed ones, they were dead before they were cooked'. Although a recent study from the LSU AgCenter dispelled the myth, I'm still not taking any chances. Besides, there's about 40 pounds of crawfish in a sack, I can do without the arguments.
Along the same food lines, South Louisiana is known for great food, and sometimes our ability to forget we left it out. Leaving out pizza is one thing, but how long to leave out 'rice and gravy' before something goes wrong? We've all been there. Having a party, serving food, visiting with friends and family. Hours later you realize the gumbo is still sitting on the stove and the burner is off. According to the FDA, you shouldn't leave food out longer than two hours, or else you risk the possibility of bacteria and other 'problems'. Keep that in mind when you're cleaning up from the party one evening.
"If you don't like the weather, just wait five minutes" is a phrase heard often around South Louisiana. For that reason, it makes things difficult to plan when it comes to outdoor events, especially during the 'Summer weather pattern' months where there's always at least a 20% chance of rain. Other times you really have to keep an eye out on the 7-day forecast and hope for the best.
We covered crawfish and leaving food out earlier, but this one is slightly different. Geographically we are close enough to the coast to get fresh seafood daily, and our restaurants do a great job of featuring those items on their menus. If you want to cook at home, you can certainly visit one of the many grocery stores, maybe head down to Delcambre and buy fresh off the boat, or even stop by a roadside stand. That being said, you must always be wary where you get your seafood. There are many responsible people who follow protocol when storing seafood, but others may not be so careful. A wise man once said 'Caveat emptor' (let the buyer beware) and is great advice when dealing with roadside food items.