The last few years I have noticed that around the start of Lent there is a deterioration in people’s driving habits. I attributed it to people who had decided to use Lent as an excuse for going on a strict diet, perhaps after giving up on any related resolutions at New Year. Drivers become cranky and impatient, and it seems they are just waiting for the opportunity to run over pedestrians, beep at each other, tailgate, go the wrong way around roundabouts, ignore stop signs, and so on. I have had to change my theory. Last Friday I observed a lot of dreadful driving, particularly during the 10 minute walk coming home from school. Perhaps self-inflicted deprivation is not a part of it. Perhaps it is just that very suddenly the day length has become shorter, and the sun seems to come up so much later than it did a week or two ago. Maybe people are inadvertantly sleeping in, and so they are cranky as they try to fit everything into a shorter time.
Yesterday I finally had a pleasant encounter on the road as I cycled. It was one of those situations where I could have sped up and maybe made it across a busy road before the lights changed for the other traffic, but maybe not, so I stopped. I then noticed, when the lights changed, that a truck driver was slow to start, had anticipated the dash and waited for me. So I mouthed ‘Thank You’, and was pleasantly surprised when he replied ‘You’re Welcome’. Of course, the huge car moving in the opposite direction had shot across the road at high speed, not about to forgive a cyclist for dashing… But I don’t care about that person. I am just so amazed by the truck driver, so grateful that he has given me positive experience to focus on while so many others were irritating me so much.