Front Street, the aorta of downtown Issaquah, is a two-lane road with few side-streets. Even in the best of times, congestion around the traffic lights ripples back for blocks, but when somebody needs to make a left turn against traffic, a clot the length of the entire town forms almost immediately. The scenario that arises when both lanes are capped by two cars, when neither one can complete their left turns because of each other, is difficult to translate into modern experience. Those of you who remember the autopsy from Crichton's The Andromeda strain share a metaphor with me.
In a way, I'm delighted by this. Washingtonians have an entirely different herd-mentality response to traffic congestion than most cultures. Nevertheless, I will be doing a lot of walking.