Reasons why I walk as near to the inside of the path as possible on my way to work
On my walk to school each morning, I go down a country road for 10 minutes. And I've begun to play a little game called 'What are the drivers doing?' I look into each car which passes me and observe the drivers. This game is subtitled, 'Being So Needful of Distraction from the Fact That One's Legs are Moving That One Has to Nose Into Other People's Lives for Entertainment'.
I'm not going to call them 'drivers' any more, though. I'm going to call them 'those at the wheel'. Because MOST of them are not just driving. They are doing other things while their car is moving, often erratically, along the road. Here is a list of the Other Things they are doing.
Other Thing Number 1: Texting
On average, about 1 in 5 of the those-at-the-wheels, are texting. Texting? You mean, texting which involves looking at your phone instead of out of your windscreen? Yes, that kind of texting. You mean, texting which is basically the equivalent of reading as you drive? Yes, that kind of texting. You mean texting which means you only have one hand on the wheel while you are reading and pressing buttons? Yes, that kind of texting. Fran, why are you asking this mighty list of questions and then answering them yourself? Is it because you find it hard to believe that people do this with a clear conscience? Bang on!
Other Thing Number 2: Reading texts
Some people are not actively texting, but are reading texts. Who knows? They may just have texted, or be about to text, but when I see them, they're just reading one. I will not inflict on you another high-octane list of questions and answers, but I feel just as incredulous about this. If you asked most of those people whether they would catch up on a chapter of Sense and Sensibility while driving the kids to school or going to work, they would think that was ridiculous. So .........
Other Thing Number 3: Applying make-up
I used to see people doing this at traffic lights, and, fair enough, if you're stationary, I guess. But why wait until I've stopped, these ladies must be thinking. Why not just get on with it while on the move, one hand on the wheel, the other wielding a mascara stick or lipstick? But I just don't see the logic. 'Hm, what shall I do? Get up a minute earlier and apply the make-up at home while I'm sitting still and doing it properly, or apply it in the car while moving along, leaning to one side towards the driver's mirror, not quite able to see, and at risk of ramming a mascara stick into my eyeball as well as mowing down a middle-aged teacher on her innocent way to school? I know. I'll do it in the car.'
Other Thing Number 4: Drinking coffee
I've never had scalding hot liquid spill into my lap unexpectedly, but I can't imagine it's one of those moments you'd file under 'Nostalgic, Happy Memories' in your mind, like your Sunday visits to Grandma, or the time you kissed your lover at the top of the Eiffel Tower. But I see those-at-the-wheels risking it daily, and I don't just mean drinking out of cups with lids and those little holes. And, anyway, whose idea was it to make out that the little-hole lids were safe? They stop you from blowing on your coffee to cool it, and you get maximum burn when the liquid slops through and applies lava to your bottom lip. So, either way, lid or no lid, there's a possibility that being scalded on sensitive parts of your body will mean you lose control of the wheel and find yourself welded to a tree trunk (or an innocent middle-aged teacher walking to work).
I will cease my ranting and leave you with this. Judging on my road alone, there are SO many people desperate to go and meet Jesus.