October 13, 2014 § Leave a comment
Pulling up to a t-junction, I ease off the accelerator and, applying a little bit of brake, quickly shift into a lower gear to avoid stalling. I’m five, maybe four car-lengths away from the junction now so I indicate left and turn my attention to the right, scanning the oncoming traffic for a gap large enough to fit a lorry (complete with a delivery of three forklift trucks bound for a quarry in the south of France) through.
My driver yawns slightly as I pull out into the turning and, once I’m happily onto the straight road, I take a moment to glance down at the dashboard, mentally noting and make a note of my low fuel levels. Neither my driver’s fatigue nor the amount of petrol in the tank are cause for concern; thanks to the ample amount of time on the clock I can plan for an overnight stop just south of Paris, where I should also be able to refuel.
A short EuroTunnel ride later and its starting to rain. Windscreen wipers on, headlights set to half-beam, and the dulcet tones of a podcast… Suddenly I’m fourteen years old again, being driven down the M4 after a long weekend spent with extended family. The sounds of the road are muted by watertight windows, and the warmth of the car breeds that feeling of safety you can never quite recapture once you’re old-enough to recognise your parents flaws.