Friday, 17 December 2010

Every cloud...

Two and a half hours is how long it took me to drive to work yesterday. Normally it takes just twenty minutes.

We'd had some rain during the night, which has the same effect on the Libyan transport system as half an inch of snow does on the UK's. To be fair, it was alot of rain, a huge amount in a short period of time, even some hail and a superb thunderstorm. This combined with the fact that all of the drains are full of sand, means large lakes appear everywhere and the place grinds to a halt.
The Roundabout of Death Claims 2 More Victims
A local roundabout, known as 'The Roundabout of Death' always gathers a bit of water and yesterday it was resembling a boating lake. The poorly though out road design means that all traffic coming into town has to go through this point, rather than over it, combine this with the Libyan attitude of 'if none of the lanes are moving, make another one' and no one goes anywhere. The traffic jam was made worse by the fact that loads of Libyans had decided to stop their cars right next to the roundabout to look at the water and blocking one of the lanes of the highway.
Luckily I had a magazine to read while I sat there for two hours, unfortunately I had no empty water bottle available to make myself more comfortable.
Despite the inconvenience of getting to work late and having to sit in the car for much longer than my bladder wanted, it was absolutely worth every second. One truck driver had decided to try and cross the central reservation to escape the gridlock and had succeeded in totally seesawing himself, all 4 wheels clear off the ground. It was a classic piece of Libyan bloody mindedness and made my day. If only I'd got a photo.

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