posted on: Thursday November 8, 2001
by Jessica Bonvino
Jessica Albetski has a car on campus. Get off the road or make room because my blue Dodge Neon may plow you down. So, I’m a bit late with this announcement. I’ve actually had my car for over a month, since the very day when my grandparents brought it from home (God bless them). It’s been a long and heated debate within my family, ever since I received the wonderful notice from security granting me permission for a car. My nights were then spent dreaming of being able to drive my car home, never having to stand on an overbooked train again. I’d have the luxury of packing as much as I need into my car. I also saw visions of myself driving past freshmen waiting for the shuttle in hordes, honking and waving. I was determined to live out these dreams. So I pleaded, begged, and finally convinced my parents to let me have a car on campus. They planned to drive it to me within two to three weeks into the beginning of the semester. Yet, after September 11, they became wary of driving to Providence and taking the train home. So, they waited, I waited, and my friends waited, until one beautiful Thursday morning when my grandparents met me in front of Moore Hall with my car. Thus began my journey of driving in Providence, its neighboring towns, and receiving numerous bribes from friends to cart them around. So, for the rest of this article, I’ll describe my qualms, annoyances, and near mishaps I’ve had during the past month of driving. For starters, I hate the mall garage with a passion. It scares me, plain and simple. Cars turn corners at 60 mph, totally oblivious to the thought that they may hit a car around the bend. So I creep and crawl throughout this garage, knowing that no one else really cares about getting into an accident but me. But even before I experience driving around, I have to enter this car hell. Somehow, I just can’t get my car close enough to grab the parking ticket at the booth. So I usually have to open my door and grab it. Or, sometimes, when I do get close enough, I press the “assistance button” by mistake, on which my friends will forever comment. What kind of assistance would you get anyway? Would someone speak to you through a microphone? Or, would a person physically come to you? I didn’t stick around long enough to find out, because either way, you’d end up blocking an entire lane of traffic waiting for this so-called assistance. Now, if getting into the garage and driving around isn’t enough, I eventually have to leave the hell. So, one terrific Saturday afternoon, I’m walking toward where I think I’m parked, just to see my car isn’t there. I didn’t flip out just yet, but when I traveled to the next level, and still didn’t see my car there, thoughts of theft entered my mind. I started flipping out, and my friends followed me as I paniced, and try another level. Just before I was about to call the National Guard, I found my car, parked as undisturbed as I left it. I hate the mall-parking garage. Secondly, I hate I-95. I do find it funny that Rhode Island seems to be the crossroads of the United States, because for every Rhode Island license plate, there is one from Florida, Wisconsin, Massachusetts, Georgia, and Oregon, etc. Anyway, back to why I consider I-95 the antichrist of all highways I’ve driven. Driving on this interstate is just another hell. Especially between exit 14 and the rest of the way to Massachusetts. Rhode Island drivers are unbearable, even more so when they cut you off, coming an inch within hitting your car. Having occured one of my first days of driving in Rhode Island, this event was not a pleasant experience. So I hate parking in the mall and driving on I-95. But, I need to do both if I want to shop or leave the city. While these are only two things I loathe about driving around, there are a million other reasons why having a car on campus is so convenient. It’s the ability to go anywhere, whenever you want, at any time. And though sometimes I may become a taxi service for friends, I don’t mind. They usually offer good bribes.