Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Local Government That Works

The County is turning our 2-lanes-no-shoulder cross street into a 6-lanes-with-amenities major thoroughfare.  As I've told you before, this makes me both happy and sad.

Since they started earlier this summer, there has been an explosion of caution cones and yellow earth moving equipment in and around our neighborhood.  This is not an entirely bad thing.  The trucks are an interesting combination of enormity and delicacy.  They pick up exactly the chunk of concrete they are intending to grab and they deposit it on a pile of debris which is scooped and dumped and carted away by vehicles whose tires are taller than The Schnozz.

They don't drive those machines slowly.  Watching a tractor trailering a water truck easily half a football field long zoom across the road in front of your bumper, swaying and bouncing and careening is not something you forget.  Trust me.  

There are a variety of private companies working on this project.  There are also several government agencies involved, doing the work and over-seeing the work.  Last week somebody made a rut at the end of my street.  

It was "a giant depression, a hole, an axle-breaking asking for a law-suit water holding ditch" there at the intersection, as I told the County on the phone and in a subsequent email.  I suggested that "someone should fill in the accident-waiting-to-happen on my corner."

I didn't have much hope that anything would happen.  The woman I knew was in a meeting and I was talking to a new-to-me-human.  I'm not much good with service personnel when I'm peeved.  I have a hard time keeping my irritation with the situation from bleeding into my interpersonal telephonic interactions. 

I'm not proud of myself and I'm working on it and maybe the work is coming to fruition because when I complained again the next morning I was rewarded with an email and a phone message and an update on what had caused the problem, what was told to the workers, who was responsible for the outcome, and what she had done to ameliorate the situation until a permanent solution could be put in place.

Her email was concise.  It answered all my questions, even the ones I didn't remember to ask.  I was in awe.
When her plan went awry the next day (a lack of asphalt is a lack of asphalt..... there's really no substitute) she informed me that no one could do anything until my problem was resolved.

That is constituent service.  The road project is overwhelmingly obnoxious and will be going on forever and ever.  It's nice to know that someone is listening to me whine.


  1. Don't you just love it when you are actually heard and responded to by local government? I'm always surprised and relieved when that happens. There has been a lot of road work here in Northern Virginia this month. Every where you go, there is paving work. Not sure why they would be doing paving when it's been so hot....

    I'm glad the system worked for you and I'm so pleased to hear that someone in government actually wanted to help. :)

    Have a great day and stay safe.

    Megan xxx

  2. >>I have a hard time keeping my irritation with the situation from bleeding into my interpersonal telephonic interactions. <<

    I love this line. Sounds like me! I'm glad your irritation got you a solution, or at least the beginning of one. Many times my irritation just gets me more irritation. Like an incident I've had this week with my own church where I have been a member for 36 years. Irritation has gotten me no where.

  3. Ah, dkody, Little Cuter and Big Cuter and TBG all tell me the same thing - no one listens when you yell at them. Yet I, like you, cannot seem to stop myself. One wonders......

  4. I get so annoyed that Ormond (of 25 years with me) takes the phone or the prescription or the order and leaves me home while he spends hours trying to rectify it. I feel like I will just get mean and yet I never do when I have to deal with it. But boy I sure talk to myself and say all the things I wanted to say to that annoying person. Must sound like a mad dog growling to itself. Just today the prescription dance which continues into tomorrow. Argh, matey !~!


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