David Brooks’ recent column “Common driving courtesy can signal a region’s culture, selfish or kindness” was spot on in my experience. I grew up on a farm in Michigan and lived in the LA area for 20 years before moving to Boise 27 years ago. When first here I was frustrated because the drivers didn’t seem in a hurry and drove slow.
Then I realized “they” were driving the speed limit. Wow — coming from the LA area many drove at least 5 or 10 mph over whenever possible.
Having friends and family there we would visit California and on one trip I realized (half in jest) that you had to be in the correct lane when you left your driveway because the other drivers wouldn’t let you merge or move over. The worse thing would be to use your signal, then have the other driver speed up to block you. In Boise we signal and the other driver lets you in.
I myself had to learn to be more considerate, and breaking the old California habits took time. So to my fellow ex-Californians, work to break the old habits which could have made driving there unpleasant … your heart health will thank you.
Bill Beck, Boise