Thursday, February 3, 2011

Share the Road

This has nothing to do with how patient and positive a parent I am.  It has to do with how I drive.

I like to think I am a pretty good driver (so does everyone, right?).

When the babe makes comments from the back about my driving, I politely tell her that I know what I'm doing and don't appreciate being told how to drive by a 4 year old.

When drivers behind me at red lights honk for me to turn right when it is clearly unsafe, I tend to stare them down in the rear view mirror and gesture at the traffic that I will no doubt run into if a turn is attempted.  And no, I don't give people the finger (if my kids are in the car).

This morning, as we were driving to school, the second scenario occurred.  We had just started our commute when this bow tie wearing Camry driver decided to honk and gesture at me at a red light.  I dealt with it in the above described manner and thought I was done with it.

When the light turned green I proceeded to turn right, as did the driver behind me.  He stayed behind me all the way until the next turn.  And the next turn.  And the next turn.

Honestly folks, my heart was thumping and I felt like I was going to start crying by the time we hit the third turn and he was still there staring at me at every light and stop sign.  I've heard of road rage, and there is a lot of it in these parts (DC and Dallas have the longest commute times in the country).  And while I knew I may be overreacting, some worst case scanarios starting running through my mind. 

I wanted to call my husband and ask him what I should do, but I was driving, and frankly, I was concentrating on every move the guy behind me made.  What was I going to do if he was still behind me when I had to park?

I remembered there's usually a police car parked outside an elementary school a block from the babe's school.  Not knowing what else to do, I made a turn towards where I hoped the cop car would be parked.  And that is where I lost my crazy friend.  The police car wasn't even parked in front of the elementary school, so it wouldn't have done me much good anyway.

Was the guy just messing with me, or did he really need to follow my every move for 15 minutes straight?  I had so many disturbing thoughts run through my head, but ultimately I was worried about the position I had put my 2 innocent children in.  What if this guy was really a nut job? 

Should I stop gesturing at people on the road?  Should I not honk at people any more?  Should I drop the parts of me which have become "agressive" on the road?

What would a patient and positive parent do?  Be a good driver, that's what they'd do. 


Anonymous said...

Hard to predict how crazy people will reason. Probably best without gestures (which are easily misinterpreted. ?). J

Anonymous said...

Firstly my 3 year old also likes to tell me how to drive! lol I find it charming one day and very annoying the next :D
I suppose my wavering opinion would be the same for road rage, sometimes other peoples driving drives me INSANE and my insults, gestures and facial expressions can get out of control ha ha and other days I can get very smug when I decide to take the higher ground and just ignore them!
Aslong as you don't get out your car your safe sister got loads of abuse from a bloke once who got out his van and started shouting at her for parking badly (poor bloke she is DREADFUL at parking) however she was with her baby and he was being very aggressive so she threw a load of mint imperials at him!! lol They can be quite lethal when coming at you with the energy of a protective mum so perhaps you should keep a bag of them in the car just incase!! :D