Dear reader: This guide is to help you navigate safely and/or swiftly through the fair community of Valencia, California. It is a bit different than most driving guides since Valencia’s traffic and signals are a bit different.
Chapter 1: Signals and Expectations
A green signal light means you may enter the intersection and happily and safely proceed through the roadway secure in the knowledge that you will come to a complete stop at the next intersection where you will most certainly be greeted by a red light.
The red signal light means you must stop. You may not enter the intersection. You will need to wait for drivers going in different directions to have their turn.
For example, if you are heading east, you will need to wait until drivers going south and north have their turns, then the drivers making left turns east and west to have their turns. And, of course, be careful not to go into the crosswalk when a pedestrian is at hand. Finally, after what seems forever, it’s your turn on the green.
But the most important signal to watch for here in Valencia is the yellow.
Here, in Valencia, if the yellow is going to change to red it means hit the gas – stomp on the accelerator – put it in jump and get out of Dodge. Beat that red!
Because Valencia drivers are always trying to get out of Dodge, it is important for you to remember that when a signal light you have been waiting for just turned green, you should take your time and not rush because one of those “beat-the-red rushers” may come roaring through. And remember, unlike baseball where ties go to the runner, ties in the intersection go to the hospital.
If you visit Valencia often or if you live here in Awesometown, you might become one of the “beat-the-red rushers” – or you can learn to go with the flow and just take your time. Of course, some people will think you’re from out of town, but so what! You’ll be a bit more safe.
If you understood Chapter 1, there is no Chapter 2.
If you didn’t understand Chapter 1, Chapter 2 won’t help.
Richard Myers is a Valencia resident.