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Saving America’s rest stops. October 15, 2012

Posted by ourfriendben in wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. Our friend Ben and I are on the road, enjoying our first road trip together in quite a while. We’ve been fortunate enough to travel down the beautiful Shenandoah Valley and through the foothills of the Smokies, then on to Nashville, in what appears to be peak foliage season down here. Given that the trees have barely begun to show color up in our part of scenic PA, we were totally unprepared for the dazzling display of reds, yellows, oranges and purples that lined the highways and rose into the mountains. What a thrill!

Long-time readers may recall that I have a sort of thing about the so-called “rest areas” that pop up along the highways to provide travelers with much-needed bathroom breaks. (Type “Seeing America, one rest area at a time” into our search bar at upper right for more on this.) And I’ve been worried that, given the economy, the government would decide that they were an unnecessary luxury and shut them all down. I don’t know about you, but I find stopping at a clean, roomy rest area a far preferable experience to creeping into the back of some dubious gas station to find a bathroom, then praying it actually has soap, paper towels and running water.

So I was delighted to see that Virginia has come up with a workable solution to this problem: It has partnered with Geico. At our first rest stop in Virginia, I was a bit startled to see the Geico gecko peering at me from the rest area sign. But it turns out that Geico is sponsoring all the rest areas in Virginia.

Talk about win-win! Virginia gets financial assistance to maintain its rest areas. Geico, which after all insures vehicles, gets its logo and phone number where drivers of cars, trucks and motorcycles can see them. And grateful travelers get clean, safe, well-maintained bathroom facilities.

Thank you, Virginia, and thank you, Geico! And you other states, listen up.

‘Til next time,

Silence

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Comments»

1. Mike Timonin - October 16, 2012

We’re just back from visiting family in Virginia for Canadian Thanksgiving (which is Columbus Day), and I, too, was mildly shocked to see the Geico gecko on the rest-area signs as well. My wife informed me that Virginia had, in fact, considered shutting them all down before Geico stepped in, which is, I suppose, better than the alternative.

Quite right, Mike! Hope your trip down was as beautiful as ours!

Mike Timonin - October 23, 2012

It was an absolutely gorgeous trip – we had fantastic fall leaves all the way down from New York, and they were even better on the way back up.


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