When getting there is half the trip: Road signs in Budapest
“They have worries, they’re counting the miles, they’re thinking about where to sleep tonight, how much money for gas, the weather, how they’ll get there–and all the time they’ll get there anyway, you see.”
– Jack Kerouac, On the Road
We spend a lot of time on the road. Lately, much of that road has been the route between Belgrade to Budapest. The drive is fairly easy, but summer lines at the border and construction have made the trip a bit longer. And now, just before we enter Budapest, UGH: merging lanes and traffic cones of construction work appear. Fortunately, Hungarian officials have tried to combat driver frustration with helpful signs. I like to call them “The Four Stages of Summer Driving”
Step 1: Anger.
“Traffic?!?” This stinks! Why can’t they repair the roads when I’m not on them? Why can’t these other cars get off the road? Don’t they know I have an important date with the Gerbeaux gelatto stand?”
Step 2: Bargaining.
“Maybe this will clear up pretty quickly. Also, ‘tereles’ is a funny word. I am still upset, though.
Step 3: Acceptance.
“I guess this is just a part of summer road trips. Hopefully there’s a rest stop ahead. I’m in the mood for a raspberry Fanta. And a clean bathroom.”
Step 4: Happiness.
“Finally! Now we can speed all the way to Budapest. Wait, is that a cop car? UGH…”
At least the signs are a good reminder that ol’ Kerouac was right. We get there anyway.