In the Seattle area, most houses have fences, which accurately represents how close people allow others to get to them in the Pacific Northwest.

But I’ve noticed many homeowners take it a step further. Their fences go all the way around the house and include a driveway gate.

As I sometimes see cars leaving or arriving at their gated houses, I’m struck by the same thought: Why would you ever want to have a gated driveway.

If you have a gated driveway, you’re always either waiting for the door to open so you can leave, or sitting at the end of your driveway – or the road – for your gate to open. And there’s no such thing as a gate that moves quickly, so the wait just seems longer and longer, day after day.

But may people don’t have the luxury of a gate opener. They have to drive up to the gate, get out of the car, move the gate, drive past the gate, get out of their car, put the gate back, go back to the car, and then continue driving. When the leave in the morning, and then when they return at night.

I can only imagine how welcome that is when you just want to run a quick errand. And when it’s raining, that’s a great little side trip every time you go anywhere.

I’m always impressed by what people will put up with in their daily lives.