I was driving to my sister’s house this evening on an errand. The road to the village where she lives is a fairly typical country road: wide enough for two cars to pass (as long as one of them isn’t being driven by a knob) and full of turns and twists and smatterings of houses. This particular stretch is about 4 miles and for the first 500 yards is slightly wider and carries the national speed limit. After that, it’s signed for 30mph as you go through the first clutch of houses and remains at 30mph for a 2-3 miles.
Many moons ago (the last time I was caught speeding) I attended a Speed Awareness Workshop. Inattention (and, quite honestly, yakking) had caused me to go slightly above the speed limit and I was clocked. I have to say that it was an educational experience and has caused me to pretty much stick to the speed limit ever since. After all, what’s the point in getting somewhere in a hurry if you run the risk of injuring or killing someone? I think that getting older also has a lot to do with change of attitude and therefore, this evening, as I was pootling along the road and got to the 30mph sign, I noticed there was a car coming up behind me. I also noticed that it was being driven by a young man.
“Great” I thought, “Arse hugger alert”. Sadly, I was right. I love having cruise control in the car and it’s really handy for this particular road as it’s more than manageable at 30mph and can be more than a little hair-raising when taken at a higher speed. So I had to put up with having another car practically attached to my rear bumper through the whole 3omph zone.
Why does everyone have to get everywhere as fast as possible? Is it an indication of how they live their lives in general? If so, I feel sorry for them. I also feel slightly annoyed that I (despite much work on myself) still feel the need to increase my speed so that I don’t feel I’m inconveniencing someone. Then I have an internal argument with myself and hear the words of one of the people who led the Workshop saying “if you’re sticking to the speed limit, you’re keeping the people behind you legal” and “the speed limit is a maximum, not an advisory” and I get pissed off at the driver behind me who’s goading me to go faster.
Then there’s also a little devil in me that toys with the idea of dropping to 5-10mph under the speed limit just to mess with them … 😉