13 Sep 2017

And Then A Crossing...

I’ve done a couple or more posts in the past relating to old folk and driving – okay, this old folk - and this is another right here with a little less of the old.

While still horizontal but semi awake in bed this morning, mentally preparing for the arduous task of bending and pulling on socks** prior to ambling to the coffee maker, roundabouts popped into my head. Such is the strangeness of an old head. You can enjoy my first roundabout post by clicking right here – as for the elderly and reversing, enough said. Hay, don’t laugh, age is coming your way faster than you would like to think, okay? Anyhoo, this thought relates more to the fellows who do the planning than the drivers.

I’ll explain and feel sure that’ll help you understand what the hay I’m typing about.

Not too far from me and us is a busy dual carriage-way. Along this road it intersects with a very busy rat-run and the flow is assisted with a roundabout. So far so-so.

At certain times of the day, usually any time between seven AM to seven PM, the rat-run is just a constant stream of two-way traffic going straight across the roundabout and this flow becomes so constant that the flow of the dual carriage-way is severely slowed; slowed to such an extent that when one car moves to exit the roundabout onto the dual carriage-way this slight gap is taken advantage of to leap into the flow to cross the roundabout. This, obviously, requires a frantic pump of the go faster peddle to get into the flow and dive off the other side avoiding a broadside blow from the frantic flow from the left.

And this is the bit I can’t fathom from a planning perspective. Immediately at all the roundabout exits some planner decided it’d be the perfect place for pedestrian crossings. Just the Zebra striped pedestrian ‘right of way’ thingy – no lights. Thus, you pump it up to get round to find your frantically throwing out an anchor as someone, head in phone, steps onto the crossing. There are many such roundabouts here about where wot I be.

Who’s idea was that then? Did it look good in a Power Point presentation? Wouldn’t the software let ‘em move the crossing fifty or a hundred yards down flow from the roundabout exits? One wonders how many fender benders there’ve been on these roundabouts. Many I would think. Having said that, I’m old...

**Buy big fluffy slippers and worry about socks after several ‘awake making’ mugs of coffee.

Quote;  Jenny Downham.

There's a gang of boys on bikes blocking the road ahead. They've got their hoods up, cigarettes shielded. The sky's a really strange colour and there's hardly anyone else about. I slow right down.
"What shall I do?"
"Reverse," Zoey says. "They're not going to move."
I wind down the window. "Oi!" I yell "Move your arses!"
They turn languid, shift lazily to the edge of the road and grin as I blow kisses at them.
Zoey looks stunned, "What's got into you?"
"Nothing - I just haven't learned reversing yet.”

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