There are lots of things I don’t understand.
- Why does the door on a tumble dryer stay locked for several minutes after the cycle is finished? Is it punishing me for not hanging my washing out to air dry?
- Why did I have to learn (insert: “attempt to learn”) square roots in school? 25 years as a stockbroker and not only did I never need to know the square root of anything, I don’t know anyone who did.
- Why does the warning on cough mixture say “May cause drowsiness, do not operate heavy machinery after taking.” – So I can’t drive a steamroller, but I can use a chainsaw?
There are many questions that perhaps there are just no answers for.
So let’s cut to the chase. I am on holidays in France at the moment, and I can say with complete confidence, France is a truly spectacular country. So, why then, do the French feel the need to drive like maniacs? Well, I should qualify that, they are not at the top of the maniac scale, that’s the Italians, clearly, but they are certainly close.
My family and I are in Provence, so essentially that means we are up to our elbows in cheap but sensational red wine, every conceivable variety of cheese, baguettes, pain au chocolat’s, croissants, the lot. Every hill has a postcard perfect medieval village perched majestically for all to admire, and every field is bursting with dreamy swathes of lavender, mouth-watering cherries, or centuries old vineyards.
Oh, and of course, every road has maniac French drivers. Into the mix of narrow country lanes and gently rolling hills, is thrown the Gallic country driver. A beret wearing, stripey shirted anger merchant, who needs to be somewhere else urgently, and decides the only way to make the car in front get a move on, is to tailgate it. Most of these roads are simply glorified laneways barely 1 ½ car widths wide, and so the other issue is Pepé le Pew driving at warp speed down a road built in 1542; to accommodate two horses passing. And if Monsieur cheeseball-eater is in a truck or van, all the closer, and faster, must he drive.
I suppose as a tourist, and a usually left-hand side of the road driver, I tend to go slower than a local, and maybe it’s a bit like I’m driving Miss Daisy, but French drivers, listen up: Tailgating just makes me go slower. So while you drive at a sedate pace behind me, don’t get angry, enjoy the stunning views and think about this:
Why is it that nobody has proposed that the Mayan calendar, which stops on 21 Dec 2012 – apparently signifying doomsday – was merely the result of the bloke who had to carve it into a rock, getting bored? I mean seriously, maybe his chisel just broke? Or he reached mandatory retirement age?