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No More Wrong Turns

If you are of baby boomer age or older, you have more than likely done it in the past. You’ve looked to a map for directions or you stopped and asked someone for directions when traveling to an unfamiliar destination.

Before computer screens in our vehicles or Mapquest directions on our cellphones, we relied on paper maps to show us how to get from one place to another when on a trip or vacation. We also depended on gas station attendants or complete strangers to point us in the right direction.

Remember those folded maps you kept in your glove compartment? Many companies even handed them out free of charge as promotions for their businesses. One service of AAA agents was to map out a trip on one of those paper maps. A bright fluorescent marker traced the way. Today, they are all but obsolete.

The paper maps were fine most of the time if you were familiar with how to read the information they provided. I wonder if kids today are taught how to read maps like we were when we were in school.

It was and still is important to know east from west and north from south. While paper maps showed us the way, they could not provide us with up-to-date detours now available via our cellphones and vehicle computers.

Today those computerized mapping programs not only tell us turn by turn how to get to where we want to go, but even let us know if there are delays on certain roads due to accidents or construction work.

Locally, Ohio County officials have made finding certain addresses in rural areas much easier. Until recently, many rural lanes and roads did not have a specific identity or were not clearly marked on any maps. This was causing a problem for delivery trucks and first responders. But that has changed for many areas of the county.

Take a drive along W.Va. 88, GC&P Road, Boone Hedges, Peters Run and more. Many rural locations have been given new street signs. I’m not sure who assigned the names of these roads or if residents had input in the selections, but they are a welcome addition to any map.

I recently saw a sign for Stonebridge Lane along GC&P Road and another titled Spring Hill Lane just off Boone Hedges Road. These street signs offer names of places that sound as welcoming as any yellow brick road. Thanks for pointing us in the right direction!

Heather Ziegler can be reached via email at hziegler@theintelligencer.net.

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