On the road again....I just can't wait to get on the road again....

The road is long.....

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less travelled by, and it has made all the difference.

Yeah whatever. Willie Nelson, The Hollies, Robert Frost.....Looks like Otter knows some culture. Regular culture, that is. Not the other type of culture. You know, medical cultures. Like a throat culture? Ain't no strep throat going on here!

What is going on is a Made up Monday, though. This is the day where I tell you something and you get to decide if I made it up or if I am telling you the truth.

And today, we are talking about roads. Why are we talking about roads? Because I live in the area of the country that has three seasons; Winter, Mosquito and Road Construction. And to be honest, road construction season encompasses both winter and mosquito seasons. The roads always need work. Even when they just got done working on them.

Advertisement

But, it's always been that way, hasn't it?

If you've travelled around the world, or at least around America, you've probably noticed that the roads are vastly different in certain locations. Take the East Coast of America, for example. People from the midwest who go there for a visit are all amazed at how the roads seem to be incapable of going in a straight line for more than 10 feet. Because they don't. The east coast is full of winding roads. Whereas, you go to the midwest, say Iowa or Kansas, and all the roads seem to be laid out in a grid pattern.

There is a logical reason for that. Out east, they paved over the old wagon paths. These were the roads that had been around since the land was settled. And when someone was driving a wagon, it was easier to go around a tree stump or large rock than it was to move it. And when they paved the roads, they just paved over the existing paths, for the most part.

Advertisement

But in the newer sections of the country, they had the equipment to move tree stumps and rocks. They could dynamite their way through hills instead of having to go around them. So the roads are straighter.

Roads have been paved for a long time. The Romans saw the advantage to paving roads. A paved road allowed for faster travel, both on foot and in a wagon or cart. This allowed for faster commerce and easier movement for the armies. In fact, it was the Roman Legions that first paved the Roman roads.

They did this so they could move their forces from one place to another. It was the roads that allowed Rome to conquer vast amounts of land. Without the roads, they wouldn't have been able to move toe troops they needed to the places where they were needed.

Advertisement

And the Romans didn't just slap some crap together and call it a road, either. Roman engineers looked at existing roads and made them better. A lot better. How much better did they make them? Well, there are Roman roads that were built two thousand years ago that people are using today. And not just as a curiosity to walk a little ways on. There are large sections of old Roman road that are being used on a daily basis by people to move around.

Why is that?

It's because the Romans knew what they were doing. If you look at a Roman road, you'll see it isn't all that different than the roads we build today. There is a solid foundation, drainage, and a durable surface.

Advertisement

Now, Roman roads seem to last longer because of the type of traffic they supported. They didn't have thousands of cars zooming down them every day. Most of their traffic was of the foot variety. Much less wear and tear on them, and as such, they lasted for much longer.

Also, they were cobblestone. Cobblestone lasts much longer than asphalt or concrete, but we don't use them because they make for a very bumpy ride on anything faster than a ox drawn cart.

But now is the time when you need to pay attention. I am about to lie or tell the truth. And it's up to you to decide which.

Advertisement

While there were roads before the Romans hit the scene, no one really knew how to build a lasting road before them. Therefore, the oldest surviving roads today are the Roman roads.

So, yes or no? Lie. truth, or somewhere in between? I'll be back tomorrow to answer your inquiring minds.