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Bye Bye on the freeway!

Original post made by Mom by Gunn, Green Acres, on Mar 7, 2012

I headed out from Palo Alto for the 101 freeway today, on my way to Redwood City on this beautiful sunny day. As I entered 101 from Oregon Expressway, the traffic was horrific! It was backed up, more than usual for those commuting out of Palo Alto and on their ways either North or South.
As I made my way patiently onto the 101 going North, the traffic appeared to be thinning out. Traffic on the other side of the concrete divider was packed, all lanes south bound slowing to a mere crawl. I was thinking how lucky I was that I didn't have to join in every day in what has slowly become a driving nightmare since the days that I first learned how to drive on the then two lane 101 highway in the late 1950's.

Proceeding further north in lane #2, I glanced over to the right lane on ramp and noticed it was closed off by a police officer with his red and blue lights flashing. Traffic was backed up and stopped for as far back as I could see as I was glancing at a quick pace.
I then traveled further, traffic around me thinning out. I glanced again to my right as I came upon Willow Rd. Same thing, police holding back traffic. Gee, I didn't know if someone was giving me preferencial treatment or if there was trouble in East Palo Alto... It dawned on me. Oh, yes. A visiting dignatary was at Facebook today.
I was slowing down at that point and looking a little harder at the on ramp at Willow. More police holding traffic, out of their cars, looking up and down the road. Going at such a snail pace myself by then, I turned my eyes up to my rear view mirror. There wasn't a car to be seen in the north bound lanes, totally empty. At first it was spooky, like a Sci~Fi movie...then, in the far distance before the next on ramp, I saw a moving object coming down the middle lane towards me. One large black limo. I pulled over to the side of the road. I thought about taking a photo, but there wasn't enough I rolled down my window. I waved, but could not see if anyone was looking due to the darken out windows. Then I thought how unfortunate a visitor from another country was cheated out of knowing how it REALLY is in our country, of how they missed out on our rush hour traffic... Gee, what a shame.

Comments (5)

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Posted by You've got to change!!
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 7, 2012 at 12:19 pm

Well, it turns out that there will be traffic interruptions on H.101 through Menlo Park between now and Sunday, the CHP has warned you.

Meanwhile, if that was the Israeli President being transported from Facebook to his hotel, it's time National visitors like that be transported by helicopter. Facebook must have a helipad!!!

There was great criticism about 25 years ago because Queen Elizabeth II would not travel by helicopter, she considered it undignified!!! However, even she has learned that if she wants to get from Buck House to Windsor Castle on a Friday afternoon she better do it in a helicopter. Also, her grandsons, both helicopter pilots, are dragging her into the 21 century, very slowly!!!

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Posted by Mimi
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 7, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Just made a left turn from Oregon onto Greer (heading west from 101) -- almost ran into the Peres motorcade! It was being lead by a policeman on motorcycle and he paused a bit to let me turn left in front of the huge line up of police, limo, SUVs, even an ambulance quietly following behind. Noticed the police waiting on Oregon at 5:45 tonight and I guess they had a long wait because it was just a little before 9pm when the motorcade finally went by. I wonder if we all are paying for this police time. At 5:45 we counted seven police on motorcycles placed up and down Oregon waiting for the Israeli president to drive by -- that's over 3 hours of sitting and waiting. Anyway, glad I didn't fit the stereotypical profile of how the government is thinking a terrorist looks these days or they might have blown me away rather than letting me make a left turn in front of the procession.

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Posted by Bob
a resident of Community Center
on Mar 7, 2012 at 10:43 pm

Left Palo Alto at 10:15 a.m. for San Mateo via Embarcadero 101 off ramp . CHP off road at underpass. Traffic ONTO 101 via northbound exit from westbound Embarcadero stalled - CHP blocking road. Same for EVERY northbound exit. Many cars just sitting, waiting all the way to San Mateo. Could almost sense the steam generated by angry drivers. Got off at Exit 416 - 3rd Avenue westbound in San Mateo. Northbound 101 still blocked there also. Red helicopter hovering overhead. Estimate hundreds of cars, trucks stuck in this traffic debacle. Had an 11:00 am. appointment ."Put pedal to the metal" with an eye on thinning traffic behind us. Why can't these "dignitaries" including POTUS and the V-POTUS take a helicopter and also land at Moffett Field. Arrivals and landings at SFO are also delayed, and travelers DO miss connections. WHO pays this for this police duty? Allegedly it costs about $100,000 an hour to fly Air Force one . "Silicon Valley"
is getting very popular with dignitaries. it is also getting to be a royal 'pain'.

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Posted by Saw It
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 8, 2012 at 12:51 am

I saw the motorcade driving at around 5:30PM from 101 down OrEx towards Page Mill. It was really neat! Why must everyone complain? It's fantastic that VIPs want to visit Silicon Valley.

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Posted by mom by Gunn
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 8, 2012 at 12:56 am

FYI~ It's nick name is Silly Valley....among others now I imagine ;)

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