Archive for the ‘motoring’ Category

Over the last few months I’ve been walking around my local area quite a lot. While doing this, I have noticed, even when walking predominantly along the main roads, I have seen very few other people walking!

It doesn’t seem that long ago that when walking along those same streets, you would see a number of other people also walking. I guess it’s another sign of how dependent we all are on our cars or public transport, and just, dare I say it, how lazy many of us have become.

Yes it’s easy these days, when we’re so busy all the time, to jump in our car and drive for less than 5 minutes to our next location, rather than take a few additional minutes to just walk that short distant. At a time when we’re being told that obesity is a major contributory factor to serious health problems, should we not be walking between locations, rather than taking our car?

If we walk rather than drive, not only will it aid our own health, it will also be better for the environment, and our carbon footprint.

I recently caught the end of the tv programme Room 101. In this programme the panel are given a category. They then have to discuss their pet hate in that category and persuade the host to put their pet hate into Room 101, a location whose name is inspired by the torture room in George Orwell’s novel Nineteen Eighty-Four – In that Room 101 was said to contain “the worst thing in the world”.

I thought it might be interesting to come up with some categories and see what things we’d want put into Room 101. So I’ll give a category and then tell you what I’d want put into Room 101, and my reasons why. What I’d like you to then do is tell me whether I’ve convinced you that my items should be accepted into Room 101.

Category 1 – cars

My pet hate: People who park in disabled spaces when they don’t have a blue badge

Reason: I think it’s obvious, as they deprive those who have a blue badge utilising the spaces allocated to them. I once heard someone who was not authorised to park in a disabled space, says when they were confronted about it, that they weren’t well so should have a disabled space. My response to them is, if you think you merit a blue badge, apply for one! You’ll soon find out then whether you are entitled to one or not.

Category 2 – animals

My pet hate: People who don’t pick up their dog’s poo

Reason: It’s ridiculous how you have to watch where you’re walking on some streets these days, because if you don’t you’re likely to step in dog poo. In fact a few week’s ago when I went out our gate I found, right in the middle of the entrance, dog poo! It’s bad enough that we have to watch where we’re stepping to avoid stepping in dog poo, but imagine families walking along the street with young child, as they can run and fall. It’s disgusting and a health hazard when dog poo is left lying about. I just don’t understand why some dog owners think it’s ok to let their dog’s do their business anywhere, particularly if they have no intention of clearing up after their dog. I wonder how they’d feel if someone else left dog poo right outside their gate!

Category 3 – travel

My pet hate: People who drive along in the middle or outside lanes of the motorway when there’s no traffic in the inside lane(s).

Reason: If you’re driving along the motorway and find you’re moving quicker than the cars in the outer lanes, you have to move out either to a lane outside the car going faster than you (if they’re in the middle lane), or move out behind the car in the outer lane. Even then you can find that the car moving slower in the outside lane, will still continue to drive along in the outside lane oblivious of the quicker cars behind them wanting past. If you’re not overtaking anyone, move over to the leftmost lane of the motorway, and let those who want to drive faster, a clear drive to pass you, as you’re causing a hazard sitting in a water lane driving slowly.


So there you go, there’s my three pet hates in these categories. Let me know which, if any, of my pet hates you would confine to Room 101.

In a world where people are scared to reach out and help others in case someone gets the wrong idea; where people don’t trust anyone they don’t know; and  where people don’t trust anyone who doesn’t share the same beliefs or religion as them; I want you to think about whether you would stop and help, or run and ignore in the following situations:

  1. You’re driving along a road in your car. There’s a couple of other cars about and you see only one or pedestrians at most. Then you notice a pedestrian walking along the pavement suddenly collapses to the ground for no apparent reason…What do you do stop and help or run and ignore?
  2. You’re in a busy supermarket at the checkout. There’s a young mother in front of you with a child who seems to be pushing the mother’s patience to it limits. When the checkout assistant tells the mother how much her shopping comes to, she realises she’s £2’s short of the money she needs… Do you offer to pay the £2 for her, or do you pretend you didn’t here the conversation the mother was having with the checkout assistant?
  3. You’re walking through a busy shopping area and come across a young child crying their eyes out, and they seem  to be on their own…Do you approach the child and ask them if they are ok, or if they’ve lost their mum or dad, do you go find an official from one of the shops to come and help, or do you just keep walking sure that the child ‘will be ok’?
  4. A homeless person sitting on a local street asks you if you can spare some money for some food…Do you give them some money, go buy them some food and take it back to them, or just ignore them and keep walking?
  5. You find a £20 note lying in an aisle of a shop…Do you hand it into the customer service desk in the shop, or do you pocket the money hoping no-one saw you?

What were your answers? Were they honest answers?

If you’re answers aren’t what they should be, I hope that next time you find yourself in that situation, you stop and think for a moment, and then make what is ‘the right’ decision.

It used to be that when pedestrians wanted to cross a road that had no pedestrian crossing or zebra crossing, they would stop at the edge of the pavement, look both ways and only then if there was no traffic coming, would they then walk across the road.

I’ve found recently that while most still do this, there are an increasing number of people who when waning to cross less busy side roads, will:

  • not bother to stop at the edge of the pavement and check for on-coming vehicles, and just step out onto the roads without looking; or
  • stop at the edge of the pavement, look both ways for on-coming traffic, but even if there are vehicles coming, they still start walking across the road at normal or leisurely speed so vehicles have to slow down to avoid hitting them.

What is it about a car coming towards you at 30 mph or less, that makes a person think it’s ok, they’ll slow down and won’t hit me. From my own experience the people who now seem to be ignoring cars coming towards them are those in their teenage years through to mid twenties.

Drivers have always had to be responsible for being in control of their vehicle to ensure they do not hit anything or anyone, but we used to get help from pedestrians, as they used to attempt to look after themselves by not intentionally walking across a road when a car or vehicle was coming towards them.

I have no idea why this seems to be an increasing problem, but it does strike me as just another thing where there’s a lack of respect towards other people. In other words it seems they feel it’s the driver’s responsibility not to hit them, and that it’s not their fault if they cause the driver a problem!

Come on folks, take care of yourself by crossing the road responsibly, and not just walking out onto the road when a vehicle is coming towards you!

When you drive a car, what characteristics do you need? You need to be alert, in control, aware of others around you (people, vehicles and other objects).

What about in life, what characteristics do we need to make our life the success that God wants it to be?

She of the characteristics we need when driving are the same ones we need in life. However, there is one which only applies partially when talking about life, and that is ‘in control’.

We may be a person who likes to be ‘in control’ of everything that’s going on, but in reality it’s God who we should let be ‘in control’ of our life. However we may still have parts of our life that we want to show others we are ‘in control’ of, such as emotions, relationships etc, but to bring this back to driving, we do need to let God drive our lives, as only He knows the future.


That moment when you’ve set off in the car on your holidays, and then about an hour into the journey the words “I’m not sure I remembered to lock the back door” echo round the car!

When I was younger, this or similar phrases were uttered not long into the start of our annual car journey south at the start of our summer holidays. Mum always had second or third thoughts about whether she’d turned this or that off, or lock a door or something along those thins.

If I remember correctly, I don’t think we ever turned round and went back home to check anything, although I think a couple of times we maybe stopped and phoned my aunt, who had spare keys for the house, to ask her to check everything was ok. Other times I recall Dad and I both convincing Mum that whatever it was she thought she’d forgotten to do, we had checked and it was ok.

No matter how we ended Mum worrying about something she thought she’d forgotten, there was never an occasion where it turned out Mum had forgotten to do something! How many times have we all done that, gone out, and thought you’ve forgotten something, but in reality you very rarely have?

So whether you’ve had you’re moment of thinking you’ve forgotten something when you head off on holiday this summer, or you’ve still to go on holiday, be assured that it’s more than likely that you haven’t forgotten to do something important before you head out your house on holiday.

That moment when you pass your driving test!

Were you nervous when you sat your driving test? Did you pass first time?

I remember feeling quite nervous when I sat my driving test. I think I put more pressure on myself when I sat my test as well because I’d already bought my first car the previous week, and was due to go and pick it up the day after my driving test…so I had to pass or we were going to need someone else to come with my Dad and me to drive my car home!

On the day of my test it was wet, and during my test when I had to do a reverse round a corner, and while in the middle of doing this the rear wiper on the car stopped working, so added pressure!

By the time my test finished I wasn’t sure if I’d passed or not but was feeling optimistic. It turned out to be well-founded as I passed my driving test 1st time! Woohoo! I’d passed my test and the following day was going to become a car owner…I was growing up!

I’ve done a few Word Associations with you over the last while, and today it’s time for another one. So as usual I’m going to throw some words at you  and I want you to note down the first word that comes into your mind when you read each word.

So here goes…

  1. Boots
  2. Post-it
  3. Chargewords
  4. Air conditioning
  5. Cinema
  6. River
  7. Traffic lights
  8. Engine
  9. Pain
  10. Cargo

So how did you get on with those words? Did you find it easy? Did your answers surprise you or were they just as you expected?

Well here’s my responses to my questions:

  1. Winter
  2. Yellow
  3. Phone
  4. Cold
  5. Popcorn
  6. Deep
  7. Broken
  8. Car
  9. 999
  10. Trousers

I still believe that when we respond with the first words that come into our minds, our answers tell us a lot about our emotional state, and what’s important to us at that particular point in time.

Bearing all this in mind, review your answers, does my theory hold true?

By the way, if you want me to explain any of my answers, just ask!

Today is all about options again – I’m going to give you two items at a time, and you have to choose either the option that best describes you or which you prefer:

  1. Gas fire or log burner
  2. Digital or analogue
  3. Living room or lounge
  4. Piano or keyboard
  5. Jumper or cardigan
  6. DVD or Blueray
  7. Morning or night
  8. Urban or rural
  9. Carpet or wooden flooring
  10. Crisps or peanuts

A variety of questions, some about your personality, some about your preferences. Whatever your answers, together they define who you are.

In case you’re wondering here’s my answerslogo_your_preferences_final

  1. Gas fire
  2. Digital
  3. Living room
  4. Piano
  5. Jumper
  6. Blueray
  7. Night
  8. Urban
  9. Carpet
  10. Crisps

Today is all about options again – I’m going to give you two items at a time, and you have to choose either the option that best describes you or which you prefer:

  1. CD or download
  2. Nico Rosberg or Lewis Hamilton
  3. Bacon roll or roll and sausage
  4. Bacon roll with red sauce or brown sauce
  5. Windows or android phone
  6. Android or apple phone
  7. Indoors or outdoors
  8. Introvert or extrovert
  9. Visa or Mastercard
  10. Biro or rollerball

A variety of questions, some about your personality, some about your preferences. Whatever your answers, together they define who you are.

In case you’re wondering here’s my answerslogo_your_preferences_final

  1. Download
  2. Nico Rosberg
  3. Bacon roll
  4. Brown sauce
  5. Android
  6. Android (though I’ve never actually had an Apple phone!)
  7. Outdoors
  8. Introvert
  9. Mastercard
  10. Rollerball