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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Big City Driving

I clearly have been moulded into the small town way of life, laid back, voluntarily waving at people I don't know, no traffic to fight and no road rage to deal with. Today I had to drive through the city to take Emma to her annual check-up in St. Albert. And every year I feel more and more like small town folk. I've never liked big crowds or lots of traffic but it seems as though the city is not getting any smaller and drivers are not getting any nicer. Despite all the campaigns out there for safe driving it seems they are making an opposite reaction in the big city.

Today I learned that keeping a cars length between me and the car in front of me is only an invitation to others to cut in front of me, and not keeping a safe distance. I also learned that stopping abruptly trying to avoid being t-boned by a cab driver, will cause the cab driver to also stop abruptly but proceed to make obscene gestures and yell at you because you avoided an accident and possibly death that he would have caused. He also taught my 6 year old some words that caused her to ask what they mean, and honestly I really couldn't give her the proper definition other than...(never mind, it's a bad word do not repeat it!).

I am not a slow highway driver, I do speed but not enough to warrant a ticket, but in the city I tend to stick to the limits because of all the cameras and radar traps, I just don't want to pay the fines. And this especially goes for construction zones! But the words SPEED FINES DOUBLE mean nothing to city drivers, and quite frankly if you adhere to the limits be prepared for major road rage. I would like to thank the city driver for schooling me today in the construction zone. I sure learned my lesson when you came up on my rear end so fast and then swerved around to cut me off and slam on your brakes. That was just awesome, my kids won't have seat belt burn over that one at all. I'm sorry I didn't bet the memo that 95 was the new speed limit for construction zones. The workers must be so relieved that we can go faster so that they will be splattered all over the road instead of just in one spot.

Granted I am a small town person and have been for 4 years now. We don't have to fight traffic and we don't even have to wait for a traffic light! The only things we wait for are trains, crosswalks and the seniors in town when they make a right or a left turn. At first this used to bother me, and now I welcome it. But to brush up on my city driving maybe I'll practice some of the gestures in town and see what kind of reaction I'll get! Or I'll just take some anti-anxiety medication for each drive into the city.

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