The Wrong Side of my Car

A blog about Auckland City, its streets, and culture shock

27 Apr 2018

The far side of the windshield

Some observations of the far side of the windshield. I can’t read people’s minds, so I filled in some details…

Every day John Doe catches the bus to work on Glenfield Road. As usual in the morning he has to cross the road. He managed to cross to the middle of the street to the pedestrian refuge, but is now stuck with the endless stream of cars going to the city. With that endless steam comes his bus, and it pulls over…

There goes the bus. If the next bus is a bit delayed he will be late for work.

Jane Doe is visiting Western Springs park. Luckily there were still a few parking spots on the car park across Great North Road. There is no zebra crossing however, only a ‘refuge’. She doesn’t quite fit between the traffic islands with her pram. Cars are sailing past, just centimetres away.

John Doe’s bus just stopped. There are a few parked cars on the street. Sigh. Another few minutes until the bus finally has a gap to get past those.

John Doe is halfway crossing the road to the florist. Unfortunately there is no meridian, just a centre line. He feels how the turbulence behind cars zipping past is tugging on him. Hopefully nobody has to swerve for something…

John Doe is quite rattled. He is on his bicycle on his way to work. There are a few cars parked on the street, and while going past one, another driver still squeezed past him. With only centimetres to spare it was quite a close call.

That was the second time this week. There will be many more times. Maybe he should go back to driving before someone makes a mistake and he ends up dead.

Jane Doe started crossing the road when someone turned into the road a block away. The road is quite wide, and she can’t quite get out of the way in time. Frustrated, the driver leans on the horn as his car roars away.

Jane Doe is 8 months pregnant. She doesn’t have the fitness to scurry out of the way.

John Doe is nervous. Next week he has his test to get his license.

Sometimes he is not quite confident enough to reach the speed limit. Rumour has it that people failed for slowing down between parked cars, or for stopping to let someone waiting in the middle of the street cross. Not unduly impeding traffic, you know.

It is going to be a wild 30 minutes.

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