Three Of My Biggest Valley Fears

I’ve been temping in the San Fernando Valley for about three months now. This means that I take two of the worst freeways in existence in order to get to work: the 405 and the 101. Having spent all of my life on the Westside, I dread the commute to and from the valley. My biggest fears include:

1. Getting stuck in gnarly traffic due to an accident.
2. Getting stuck in the valley because of brushfires.
3. Getting hit by another car somewhere on the 405/101.

Mind you, I dated a guy who lived in Tarzana for two years. He was not a fan of driving, so I was the one who made the trek through the Sepulveda Pass. I’d only swing by late in the evening or early in the morning to avoid traffic. If there was an accident, I’d push back my arrival time by at least a couple of hours. If the hills were on fire, we’d communicate via IM. If the weather wasn’t LA’s usual sunny self, I drove with extreme caution in order to avoid an accident. Knock on wood, I managed to avoid those three fears during those two years.

In the last month, it’s like those three fears decided to come out and play. As of now I have:
1. Been caught in extreme stop-and-go traffic because a car caught on fire near the 101. (This would happen the same day a big rig flipped over. Luckily it was on the opposite side of traffic.)
2. Had to stay in the valley for a few extra hours because the Sepulveda Pass caught on fire on Friday. Dinner was great, and I got to see a friend, but I’m not a fan of valley heat plus fire.
3. My car was hit yesterday while getting on the 101. The damage is minor, and hopefully it won’t take too long to fix. (At least it wasn’t as bad as my infamous accident in 2009.)

Three strikes on you, Valley. Your parole officer will be in touch.

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