Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday's Ride: Yes, Ladies And Gentlemen, There Is A Place On Earth Where Rules Of The Road Still Apply.

The Marine Corps Takes Their Driving Safety Seriously.  Thank God someone does! 

After nearly having my life snatched before my very eyes for the umpteenth time by an ill-trained, inattentive motorist, I got to thinking what the world would be like if everyone behind the wheel of a motor vehicle was actually qualified to be there?  I know, dream on, right?  Well, to tell the truth, I have indeed been to that perfect place (you could even call it a Utopia), however, I just had not realized it on the numerous occasions I was actually there.  And, while I am sure this type of facility is not unique to California, I am sure it is true from location to location.

So, just where is this land of vehicular marvel and wonderment?  Is this author just blowing the proverbial smoke in the wind, or is this magical place an actual reality?  Yes, I am happy to report, it truly does exist.  The downside is you have to have a very good  reason for being there, either by becoming a member, or, like myself, actually have official business there.

And, that location is: Marine Corp Base Camp Pendleton.

If there is still one place in Southern California where driving skills and traffic enforcement are purposeful and taken seriously, it is Camp Pendelton, and I am sure it is not alone from a military installation's perspective.  In Pendleton's case, whether it is the smooth, well marked roads, the serious, ever vigilant law enforcement officials, or the active road safety/road share awareness program, those Marines got it nailed down in the name of safety.  And keep in mind, these are the people trained to blow things up from the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli.  

Personally, I have been on the base driving a car, riding a motorcycle, and on my road bike.  In all of my visits there, I have never treated with anything less than courtesy and kindness from all other drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, runners, or pedestrians, whether they were military personnel or civilian contractors.  In other words, I have never had in the back of my mind the fear of being run-over by anyone while on the property.  I cannot say the same about our public roads.  That being the case, for me, personally, the safest place on Earth, whether in a motor vehicle or on a bicycle, is Camp Pendleton.  As for the Mean Streets of America, we can all only hope.   

Well patrolled, clearly marked, smooth, clean roads, throughout the base seem to roll on, forever. 
Sadly, there are still many people in this country which detest the military.  How one can do this while spiting in the face of those which provide the freedom they live under, is beyond me.  Personally, it takes guts to do what the military does, and I do not mind a system where upon meeting, every sentence is closed with the word "Mame," or "Sir."

Semper Fi, Boys. 

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