Grumpy Old Man – Early Morning Drivers
Due to a large hole in my bank balance, and my wife’s constant complaints about me spending too much time at home, I made the big step back into the J.O.B. (Just Over Broke) market and landed myself a short term contract at an aerospace company. By not having much “real employment” for a number of years on my CV, I took a job that was not within a short distance of home requiring an hour’s driving each way. Still good enough rate to cover the time of travel and the cost of fuel, but never enough to cover the dissipation of my time and effort on longer, more valuable tasks although my wife did stop the complaints.
So now, on every week day morning, I leave my house at stupid o’clock (around 6am) for a short, in distance, journey, but long in effort and idiot drivers. I had hoped that most of the numpty drivers would still be in their beds, but lo and behold, they arise early to get up everybody’s nose even at that time.
Now I don’t mind those flash Harry’s in their souped-up BMW’s and VW’s who get up ten minutes before they start work and have to weave in and out of all the traffic to finish up at the traffic lights possibly one car better off. I can make sure that I give them a big clearance and let them zoom towards their next accident without including me.
The ones who really get on my goat are those that think they are the only car on the road and that, even if there is another car in close proximity, their speed is the guiding factor. I tend to use main roads rather than motorways on the way to work as there are more options if there is a problem and I can get to work on time. So as soon as I come up behind one of these problem drivers, I know I’m in bother.
When they are at traffic lights, especially when there are two lanes, they manage to make their own lane in the centre thereby stopping you pulling up alongside and moving away leaving them in your wake! Their whole persona at lights seems to be designed to antagonise all drivers behind. They stop at the red and take the car out of gear, put the handbrake on and engage their passenger in conversation.
The lights change to red/amber and the passenger normally points out the need to restart driving so they engage first gear, struggle to release the handbrake and, as the lights start to change back to red, pull away at under 5 mph. Usually 3 or 4 more cars manage to get away as well, but a few moments later the whole process starts again at the next red light.
Eventually, they turn off and become someone else’s problem while we all proceed forward until we come up behind the slowest man in the outside lane! He, or more usually she, is driving inside the 30 mph speed limit for most roads, but on a road where 60mph is allowed! As they are indicating right, they have already assumed the position for their upcoming turn.
Now this turn is sometimes up to 2 miles away so do you take a chance and go past them on the inside and suffer a three point penalty if spotted by the early morning traffic cops or wait their impending turn. The former is usually the chosen route once one person does it, the rest of the queue follow, usually pulling across very sharply in front of the slow moving vehicle causing some concern to them, but never shaking their faith in their own imperious driving ability!
The worst driver’s I tend to come across, especially as I drive through the Hayes and Harrow areas, are the Indian women who are driving their husbands to work in their big old Mercedes cars. At times, when you come up behind one of these, it is hard to believe a grown up is driving them as you spot a small head looking through, YES THROUGH, the steering wheel and the thought is that a kid has stolen the car. Mind you, if it had been stolen, there is no way it would be travelling at 28 mph and again taking up more room in the road than a bus!
Then when you can go past the car, you can see them usually arguing, probably about her having to get up early to drive him to work! Neither of them seems too bothered about keeping one eye out of the four on the road and the scratches and dents down the side of the car tend to reinforce that point.
Is it any wonder that I am stressed when I get to work? Not only do I not want to be doing it, but I have to put up with some awful drivers going there. Thankfully I use the M25 to come home and we all know how well-mannered and careful every driver is using the large motorised London car park!
Have you any experiences of diabolical driving to share? Please let me know below and I’ll try and defend my own skills if you think I’m at fault rather than these idiots I seem to attract!