I made a mental New Years resolution (Mental, as in, in my head, not written down. Not the other sort of mental.) to blog more. To blog more about me. Not in a narcissistic way, of course. But this is my personal blog, and of late, I don’t think it’s been all too personal. Don’t worry I won’t be posting a steady stream of my consciousness. Just more about me and my goings on. How does that sound?
Here’s where it starts.
Late last year I got a fabulous letter through my letter box. A not so fabulous speed camera had caught me going a smidge over the speed limit. DAMN was my initial thought. Followed by some mild panic and concern. Where did this all happen? In Wales. On the first day of the holiday. While I was ON MY WAY TO THE DESTINATION! Talk about annoying.
A couple of weeks later I was offered the chance to do a speed awareness course or pay a fine and get 3 points on my licence. Course it was!
I attended a course last weekend and was fully prepared to be talked down to, made to feel tiny and generally like a bad driver. Also to be surrounded by 18-year-old boys whose idea of driving is to sit as low as possible in their seat, base pumping and the inability to switch their fog lights off, even in daylight.
I was pretty much wrong on all account.
Almost. All the people at the course were just your every day kind of people. Everyone from a London bus driver to housewives, office workers – normal people! There might have been a couple of boy-racers, but they were in their mid-twenties and should be on their way of growing out of such antics. I was probably among the younger people there. Most were in their 30s/40s. A couple in their 50s. None of these people even resembled the criminals I thought I was going to be spending 4 hours of my Sunday morning with.
So what about the contents of the course? Well, I didn’t fall asleep. That was a good thing. The course instructor was a very jolly German fella. From the outset I think his goal was just to keep everyone engaged. Apart from a couple of guys who required some coffee and had to stand at the back of the classroom (No jokes), it worked. Not once did I feel like I was a bad driver. I didn’t feel like he was being a condescending prick. I wouldn’t say the overall experience was enjoyable, nor do I think I’ll genuinely change some of my driving habits, but it did feel like a refresher theory course.
Think about it. I passed my driving test about a decade ago. A few things have slipped my mind. Though I was proud to be one of the three people (Out of 22 in the room) who successfully knew the speed limits across all types of UK roads.
While I hated having to wake up on a Sunday morning at 6am to get to the course. I hated having to spend four hours of my sacred weekend time in a classroom with a bunch of strangers being taught at. It hasn’t made me drastically re-think my way of driving.
Having said all that, it’s reminded me of a few things I might have forgotten. Might… It showed that I’m not a bad or dangerous driver. Just unlucky. Not joking. The instructor told us all that we were just unlucky to have gotten caught due to the actual percentage of operating speed cameras throughout the country.
Putting the awful Sunday morning behind me. Though, on my daily commute, I can’t help but think of all the genuinely bad drivers out there who carry on in their bad, bad ways and will never be unlucky enough to get caught. How about this people. Today, on this Friday the 13th, make a wish for one of those horribly bad and dangerous drivers to be pulled over by some flashing blue lights, huh? Or is that a little bit… harsh?