An Open Letter to the Hwy 10 Stoplight in Royalton

Dear stoplight at the intersection of Hwy 10 and County Road 26,

We are just barely into summer and we have already seen a lot of each other. Lots of trips to the lake during an event-less summer have had us crossing paths more than usual. For the most part these interactions have been brief. A quick stop to say hello, and then we go our separate ways.

Over Memorial Day weekend our time together lasted a bit longer. Lots of cars needed your attention, and I waited for you back by Bill’s Superette, slowly crawling my way towards you. When we finally did meet, you gave me the green light right away, which I appreciated.

4th of July Weekend wasn’t as pleasant. Don’t get me wrong, our short encounter to kick off the weekend was wonderful. Hardly any wait time to get to you, and a quick wave sent me on my way. The end of the weekend was a different story.

Coming from the Bowlus area, I sat next to the “Home of the Royals” sign so long that I had time to think about taking a photo of it, decide not to, change my mind, then change it back, and eventually take the photo. And the same goes for taking a photo of the intersection. I listened to an entire podcast segment while I waited for you to change from red to green. And I wasn’t the only one. There were others waiting to meet you lined up behind me.

For the most part, I’m fine with waiting. I consider myself a fairly patient person, and even see you, stoplight, as an old friend. You’re a key landmark on my way home. You are where I start to shift into the “lake version” of myself. A more relaxed and laid back person. You are a symbol that fresh air and water are in my near future.

But holiday weekends I want you gone.

Three weekends a year I want an overpass built through Royalton like the one in nearby Rice. The last thing I want to do when I’m on my way home is wait an extra 10 minutes to make a right turn, only to get that chance and be stuck waiting for a train to pass through. An on-ramp sounds so much better.

Luckily there is only one more holiday weekend left in the summer. Here’s to hoping we make up for that lost time on my way through this coming weekend, and if I save enough time I might even use it at Treasure City.

See you next weekend,


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