Friday, August 13, 2004

They Can Have It

Commuting is a way of life where we live. The price of housing is cheaper out here in the Central Valley than it is in the Bay Area, but the best paying jobs are still in the Bay Area. People literally drive for hours a day back and forth to work to save money on the cost of housing, yet still benefit from the high paying jobs that can be found over there. I myself had some experience with this phenomenon for the first two years I lived here in the Central Valley. I worked in the first city going into what is called the East Bay. The commute was not that bad, but it would still take me 40 minutes to an hour to get home on some days, and I only had to go 16 miles. I know people who drive 90 minutes to 2 hours each way to work and back.

Since then, I have gotten jobs that are here in the Valley, against the flow of traffic from where we live. Now the job that is 15 miles away, only takes me 20 minutes to get there, 30 minutes at most. I figure that with what I am currently earning, my time is worth the little bit less of a salary. This is time spent with my wife and kids, instead of stuck in gridlock, fighting with the masses to get to work and back every day. Every once in awhile, I get the chance to remind myself that I am doing the right thing.

Last night, I had to take Bobby to San Francisco Airport. We didn't leave until 7:00, which should have let me miss rush hour coming back. As it turned out, Bobby ended up coming back with me, and we hit the gridlock at 9:00. 9 PM and traffic was still stop and go. I don't know how the masses deal with that on a daily basis, without completely going insane, but more power to them, they can have it. The experience does leave me with a renewed feeling that I am lucky to be working where I am, and not have to deal with that commute every day. How far do you have to go to make your living?

My Stats:
Time Smoke-Free: 13 days, 6 hours, 1 minute and 39 seconds
Cigarettes NOT smoked: 133
Lifetime Saved: 1 Day
Money Saved: $24.71

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