Friday, January 23, 2009

Dodged a Bullet




Every now and then we get a winter day like today. After weeks of single degree temperatures, the thermometer reached the low 50's. Today was a treat. Sunny skies, low winds, mild temperature. Even the birds knew today was special. A flock of sparrows visited my backyard this morning, checking out the accommodations. It was nice to see these harbingers of spring.

Today was a day for a walk. It’s been months since I took this simple refreshing pleasure. I took advantage of this opportunity and walked in the development behind my house. Hundreds of honking snow geese passed over me in the skies above my head. A couple of buzzards, gliding on their long black wing spans, punctured the white sea of snow geese. A gentle breeze caressed my face. I took the long way through the development, finishing my walk about 45 minutes later.

Refreshed after my walk I decided this was a good day to wash my car. This was a good time to get the winter gunk off of it. I asked Bill if he wanted to accompany me. Bill and I drove to the car wash in Milton. Bill sat in the car while I lathered up my car. After rinsing the car, I drove it around to the back of the car wash to dry it off. This was the first glitch in the day. I forgot to put my bucket with sponges and drying clothes in it.

I drove out of the car wash with my dripping wet car to the nearby gas station to get some gas. I’ve never used the gas station in Milton because it is one of these old style gas stations which are hard to get into and charge too much for gas. The second glitch happened. While at the light waiting for the car in front of me to make a left hand turn Bill insisted that I pass the car on the right to get through the intersection. I was hesitant to because I’m not comfortable passing on the right. Well, I was right in this instance because as I passing the stopped car on the right, I almost had a collision with a car coming in the opposite direction that was making a left hand turn through the intersection. I dodge a bullet this time. The oncoming car slammed on their horn, letting me know I almost was the cause of an accident. I immediately said to Bill “I knew I should have done that!” This is the problem driving with Bill. For years I wouldn’t drive with him as a passenger in my car because he is a hopeless backseat driver. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve said “Do you want to drive the car? You’re going to cause me to have an accident!” I shouldn’t have listened to him this time but I wanted to avoid an argument. I blame myself.

I have another friend who likes to give directions while I’m driving. I think it’s a personality thing. I don’t know if it is their arrogance and superiority complex or their contempt of me. Maybe they're just trying to help me. However, I doubt it. It seems no matter what I do when I have this kind of person as a passenger, they feel a need to give directions. Whatever the root cause of this kind of personality, it is very dangerous to drive with someone like this as a passenger. I find that driving with a person that has this need to control you’re either defending your driving or giving in to their scolds just to shut them up. Either way, it makes for a dangerous situation. The only solution I can see is to completely ignore them. It’s interesting but if I dared to give them directions, they would have a fit.

Bill’s upset now and won’t be speaking to me for awhile. We’ve been through this before. Even after 45 years, there are bumps in the road. He’ll get over it. We’ve been down this road before. I’m just thankful we didn’t have an accident. Thank you God.

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