Each day, I travel 45 miles from Lebanon to Osage Beach to get to work. It's a pretty drive - but a LONG one! So no one could be any more excited than I am that a small 1 mile stretch of the new highway between Lebanon and Camdenton is now open! And I'm here to tell you that that one mile stretch of open road is the BEST part of my daily commute!!! New blacktop with brand new - bright white stripes, new road signs and a new landscape to see... I'd always wondered what the back of Camdenton High School looked like. This new road is a thing of beauty...until you get behind or alongside an 18 wheeler that is throwing rocks from the newly graded shoulder on your recently replaced windshield.
The newly open section actually runs from just south of Camdenton to Sunrise Beach (or so the sign says), and the rest of the proposed highway is really beginning to show some progress! I have never seen such big pieces of heavy equipment! They make the things we have at or house look like "Little Peoples" farm toys! There's this one thing with giant claws on the front that they use to pick up and move 5+ downed trees AT A TIME! It's all so orchestrated...firstthey go in and knock the trees down, then they move them and burn them while more people come in and begin to flatten out the landscape, then - well, I haven't seen what comes next. It's only been a couple of weeks now that they've been working on my stretch of the new road.
I'm amazed at the changing landscape - but saddened to see the loss of trees and grass - the pastures where the Decaturville horses have been something my children have looked foard to seeing each and every time they go with me to the lake. Gone too are the wild blackberry bushes that gave color to the tall grasses alongside the shoulders. So many things have to change to make way for new growth.
Our area is continuing to grow. This month, I've worked with 3 families who will be making Missouri their new home. With wonderful schools, a low cost of living, and a high potential of gainful employment - it's no wonder so many people think that Central Missouri makes sense. And with the new Highway 5 nearing completion..getting around will be that much easier!