Across Continents

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Back on the road

I’d a bicycle I’d named Emma, so it hadn’t seemed so untoward to christen the car Clarissa. After all, my four-wheeled friend had now become as much a companion as my two-wheeled trusty steed had been. My new vocation necessitates a good deal of travel, which I rather like. Of course, just as having a decent bicycle is a great help riding around the world, so is a well engineered automobile when purring up and down that network of interconnected car parks we sometimes generously refer to as the motorways. The M6 Toll exempted of course.

A firm advocate of better to get there alive and a few minutes adrift, I like to encourage others on the road seemingly possessed by evil spirits to simply get out of bed a bit earlier. I frequently do. Something about the early morning light cast over the spire of Salisbury cathedral.

Of course, it can be a little tedious, especially on the more narrow, slower roads, trapped behind the Daily Mail drivers. You know the sort. Consistent types. Forty miles an hour, irrespective of the speed limit, past schools and so forth. Frequently picking up speed at spots where one might otherwise be able to overtake. They’ll tell you they’ve thirty or forty years driving experience, absolute in their belief that they’re the safest on the road. After all, they’ve seen enough accidents.

Set off earlier enough and you’ll frequently spot the red light jumpers. Deliberately ignoring the traffic signals in the belief that they’re the only ones out and about. Hoping of course you don’t get to bump into them. Or them into you. Up there with those private hire drivers who also seem to think the law doesn’t apply to them, especially on a Sunday morning. I’ve a strong sense of smell, not that it’s an especial requirement to wheedle them out.


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