Posts Tagged ‘car journey’

I spent last weekend lurching from chair to sofa to kitchen to deckchair and reading in between which was wonderful and not something I get the chance to do very often. Apart from acquiring sore, square eyes, it felt like I had achieved quite a bit, although of that I’ve absolutely no proof whatsoever.  I got through a book and a half, so have lowered my reading pile a smidge and caught up with blogs I follow, most of which caused me to deviate somewhere or other. (I now know a little about Galileo’s Paradox – impressed? I know – I amaze myself sometimes).

However, one funny account of early driving experiences, on Rod’s blog, jogged a distant memory which in turn, reminded me of a recent four hour car journey my sister and I took where we talked nonstop, all the way to beyond Liverpool.  ?????????????

The purpose of our overnight trip was to view Another Place, sculptor Antony Gormley’s iron men, spread out along the soft sand at Crosby, staring out to sea, as if waiting for a sign from some alien force. There are one hundred of them, all the same, although several years of salt water washing over them has given each his own patina, and in some cases, a clothing of crustaceans. It is an eerie place: windy, with a power station and cranes in the distance adding to the bleak atmosphere. Over the years, some of the men have become half buried in the sand while others stand upright, hands by their side, waiting, waiting…

But where was I? Oh yes, driving.  I mentioned above that my sister and I talked nonstop during our drive up north. So what, nothing surprising about that, I hear you mutter. Two women incarcerated in a tin box for hours – what else would you expect. Well, I know, but actually, for us to talk in a car at all is a bit of a novelty, as we acknowledged more than once during our four hour marathon.

We have fond memories of being bundled into the back of the family car on a Sunday afternoon, aged six and three, and told to be very quiet while Dad taught Mum to drive. We’d sit there scarcely daring to breathe as Mum crunched around the Kent countryside with Dad tutting as he managed to find impossible gradients for unsuccessful hill starts.  Now, whether the insistence of absolute quietness came at a crucial stage in our childhood development, I don’t know, but neither my sister nor I ever talked much in the family car ever again, apart from asking, before we’d even passed Guildford, if we were ‘nearly there yet’ on our annual holiday to the west country.

Mum eventually passed her test but not before bearing the good-natured brunt of many a joke about women drivers, culminating in Dad buying her the record of Bob Newhart’s The Driving Instructor.  So for Mum and for Rod, who I think will appreciate this – here is Bob Newhart, taken from that original record.

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