Much to my surprise, I realise I am, to put it nicely, elderly. The world I relate to has been left behind and I am now astonished at the new reality. The result leaves me confused and increasingly critical of the system. Thankfully I am not entirely alone, many people are in the same boat – the residents of South Gippsland are questioning our modern society and its behaviour.
Recently, once again, I attended a mature persons’ chat session in Foster. To get there I travelled along Turtons Creek through the hills and trees, the journey provides a moment of pleasure. I stopped to talk to a contractor who was erecting timber and wire roadside barriers. He explained that young motorcyclists travelling at speed could fly over the edge and into the deep gully. I complimented him on his work saying the timber effect blends in with the beauty of the surrounds. Having said that, I then criticised the decision, by whoever, for undoing the good work by erecting two metre high, ugly, road signs around every bend in abundance.
This act is simply inappropriate and insensitive to the landscape. I contacted the shire manager responsible who said he would investigate. I assumed this was a one off situation so there it rested. Driving to Mirboo North to pick up my mail, this was the result of my letter box having once again been knocked out of the ground, I was greeted by a forest of the same road signs – hundreds of them, everywhere. Once again I protested their presence at the shire depot to be told quite simply: ‘we are only obeying the Australian Standards’. These are apparently set by the government in collaboration with VicRoads so, they had no choice. Driving around to check, I estimated that 50 per cent of the signs are not relevant given the small road bend and the risk involved – how ridiculous!
Surely all basic rules should be flexible giving some local interpretation? I can only assume VicRoads and the shire have stacks of the signs hoarded and stacks of funds to throw away, to hell with the beautiful South Gippsland landscape. I wonder how the travellers managed during the last 100 years? The good news is that I complained to VicRoads and to my surprise, ended up talking to the standards manager in Melbourne and, he will look in to it. I will keep my fingers crossed.
Ron Brown, Turtons Creek