Now, let me just set the record straight before I venture any further: I don't profess to be the worlds greatest driver. I've been known to leave the handbrake off in Aldi carpark and, by the time I got back to my car, it had found its way so far backwards that cars were having to drive around it. And let's not forget when I reversed angrily off my drive after a row with my then- husband and went straight into a lamp post. (Although I would like to forget screaming "DO YOU WANT A PICTURE?!" at my neighbour when they gawped at my stupidity). But there are some proper morons on the road. There are even Facebook groups dedicated to people who park like they're either a) blind or b) have stolen then abandoned said car before legging it.
I've been surrounded by examples of rubbishy driving and parking over the years. My dad, even in his earlier years, has always been a pensioner when it comes to driving. Never going above 50mph, taking 3 hours to pull out at junctions for fear he might cut up the car that's 2 miles further down the road, that sort of thing. I'll give him his dues though - when I was learning to drive he agreed to take me out in his car to practice, despite me ageing him 30 years when I pulled out in front of car without looking.
Speaking of white knuckles..my other half is exactly the opposite of my dad. He drives like a 17 year old in a Go-Kart, although I suppose if I had a BMW Z4, I'd be a bit lairy too. He told me he tazzed off a garage forecourt the other day so fast his back end (the car, not his actual bum) span round. All I could hear was my mate Vicky saying "It's late, you're tired, you're showing off and it's time to go to bed!". When I'm in the car with him I don't know what to deal with first - the white knuckles, the squeaky bum, or the raging travel sickness. Five minutes in the car with him is what I imagine the training fighter pilots have to go through to get used to G-Force speeds.
And my ex-husband took nine, possibly ten - he can't remember - attempts to pass his test. Enough said there.
But the other day, whilst cleaning the bedroom windowsill I saw THE most extreme example of crappy driving. So crappy in fact, I don't actually know how he/she managed it. Looking down the street I saw what appeared to be the back end of a car. In the air. As it was time to retrieve The Beasts from their educational establishment, I set off to investigate. Leaving the house I bumped into my next door neighbour who was coming home from walking her dog. "Do you know the number for the non-emergency emergency services?" she said. Took me a minute to decipher what she meant, and I twigged - "Have you just seen that car?!". She told me she'd just popped home to get her camera - an indicator of modern society if ever there was one!
As I got closer I saw what can only be described as a car, nose to the ground, with it's rear perched on top of a wrought iron fence. The driver was nowhere to be seen, having no doubt spontaneously combusted with the shame. The car was surrounded by a gathering crowd taking photos on their phones, which made me feel a bit less awkward about doing the same. On the way home from the school run my daughter and her friend just HAD to go and see the spectacle. And of course, I just HAD to go one further than the other rubber-neckers and get this snap:
Certainly puts my handbrake misdemeanours to shame eh? And just to put the ironic cherry on the top - the fence the car is delicately perched upon belongs to....*drumroll*... a driving instructor!!!
There must be scientific calculation that is able to explain this seemingly impossible manoeuvre, because I'm damned if I know how they managed that act of vehicular gymnastics. If anyone is able to shed some light on the matter, please send your answers on a postcard to Freepost 'I drive like a dickhead'.