Have you ever experienced Gephyrophobia? Gephyrophobia is the clinical term for fear of bridges. The fear that sends a person into anxiety driven tachycardia, palm sweating, breath holding, “I can’t do this” thought reel set on repeat.
Before the Greenville Bridge was completed, a number of people told me they were so afraid of crossing the Benjamin G. Humphreys Bridge (the old bridge) that they wouldn’t cross it. Here it is.
With its narrow two lanes, it wasn’t my favorite place to be but I crossed the bridge to get to the other side.
No Gephyrophobia for me.
Until I came across this. (Cue the music for the Price is Right’s Cliffhanger game. I heard yodeling.)
Let me introduce you to Rainbow Bridge. This scary bridge is in Bridge City, Texas on State Highway 87. I was on my way to Port Arthur and had to cross this bridge to get to my destination. What in the world?
They made this cantilever bridge to accommodate the tallest naval vessel at the time…because Galveston or New Orleans wouldn’t be options for a huge naval vessel to navigate?
I’m speculating here, but do you think they said, “Just make it big. Ah, heck y’all, make it Texas big.”
As I approached the landing, I considered escaping this 5 percent grade to the 230 ft. tall bridge (176 ft. water clearance) by means of the convenient turn around road at the base.
Half way up, the bridge didn’t seem as scary as it did at first glance in the horizon.
Reaching the crest, I released the death grip from my steering wheel, took a breath (Had I been holding my breath? Yes, I had.) and was determined to glance at the body of water below, the Neches River.
“Oh, this is one impressive bridge for this river. What am I doing? I must concentrate…and breathe.”
So now I had a glimpse of what those people were feeling about the old Greenville bridge. They would have hyperventilated over this. Rainbow bridge is Gephyrophobia worthy.
Have you every been over Rainbow Bridge? Is there another bridge out there that you’d rather avoid? How do you handle the anxiety?