Saturday, March 04, 2017

Let's Keep This Car on the Road

Some people bring an arrogant streak to the task of driving; others, like me, are afflicted by the conviction that all other drivers are sitting in perpetual judgement of our "performance". Am I driving too fast (unlikely) or too slow (probably)? Am I drifting too far towards the centre of the road? Have I forgotten to dip my headlights? Did I forget to signal my intention to turn left? Have I given those behind me ample opportunity to overtake? Do these people realise that we are in a built-up area and that all I'm doing  is trying to observe the speed limit? Am I looking out of the window too much in an effort to appear casual or, on the contrary, does my hunched posture over the steering wheel indicate that I have just robbed a bank?

In these tense encounters, I am always grateful for allies. These may include little cars whose occupants, typically sales reps who have exhausted their reserve of points, do not require a driving licence. Hostile and aggressive elements can hardly blame me if I am stuck behind one of these vehicles. Similarly, in this agricultural part of France, it would take a particularly psychopathic driver not to sympathise with me when I fail to overtake a tractor. For once in a while, I can pretend to be on the same side as the school bully.

When I was younger, and presumably more alert, I was always careful not to sound my horn at those less fortunate souls with whom I was required to share the road, so why can't the new generation extend the same courtesy to me in my twilight years? Why do they have to be so perfectly beastly to those of us who fought to preserve a world in which our descendants could drive in peace and my goodness I'm driving much too fast as I go through this village; I do so hope there are no gendarmes around.

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Dis or Dat Utopian

If I come across the word "dystopian" one more time I shall be left with no choice but to look it up and find out what it means....