About me · Driving like crazy · Race the clock · Roundabouts · Truths and Inspiration

A tale of roundabouts

Driving to work each day is an ordeal, to say the least. I enjoy driving- leisurely driving is as relaxing as floating in a swimming pool and fast driving helps curb my adrenaline rushes when I want them but driving to work is so taxing that I would rather use public transport, should such have been available for me.

My work place is about 15 kms away from home and with the vast options of roads to get there, you would think I should be able to do it in less than 15 minutes. You would guess wrong then- on an average, I take about 45 minutes to one hour to get there.

The roads to the Educational town comes in sets – you can use one set or the other or the third. IF you choose to mix and match the sets of roads, you’ve had it.

For example, one set of roads, leads almost directly from my house, to a large roundabout, one of those remnants of British legacy  in this country, with three lanes. Each of those lanes is created.  to take you in one particular direction- the lateral most lane is for you to turn right or the first turn at the roundabout, the middle lane leads you to the second turn at the roundabout and the medial most leads you to the third turn from your starting point on the roundabout.

roundabout.jpg

If you were not confused before, you would surely be, by now. To negotiate these three lanes would have been a breeze, had all drivers’ chosen to follow their pre-determined lanes and kept on them. But no, all too often, you find people crossing over from one lane to the next, mid-roundabout- if you get my meaning. This can occur with or without signalling. So once you have decided to venture into a roundabout, you need to have both your eyes, your ears, your lateral vision, your lateral mirrors, and your reflexes plus your imagination working overtime to anticipate what your next-lane driver is planning to do. And he could do anything. It is like they are out to break one of the Ten Commandments- do not covet your neighbour’s property- they would want to get into your lane and covet your driving space, because they find it suits them better. Day after day, negotiating roundabouts, not one, at least 5, depending on the set of roads you choose to take, has taken its toll on me. After about 9 months’ of using this set of roads with its 5 roundabouts- I decide to find alternate routes to get to my Educational location.

roundabout 2

And once the first roundabout is crossed, there is a short lane of three lanes on one side( meaning a six-laned section of road of a 3/4th of a kilometer in distance, which has to be crossed till a signal is reached. This short distance is so crowded with cars, moving from one lane to the next with no regard for rules or the next driver. It is only by a stroke of luck or because of the prayers of people who wish me well, that I am able to make it to the next two signals. Crossing the second signal after the roundabout is a story of its own.

My own rules that I follow :

  1. Pray and enter the roundabout.
  2. Open eyes, ears, mirrors and neck.
  3. Engage in dance moves like twisting, bending forward and backward at waist, head to left and right and even sometimes eyeball rolling.
  4. Use all the signals you have available on hand to indicate to other drivers, which your lane is which lane you intend to keep to.
  5. If after all this, you manage to come through the roundabout unscathed, now is the time to pray a prayer of thanks- because without heavenly help, it is almost impossible to pass through a roundabout with heavy traffic. 11954221821138511001Gerald_G_Girl_Driving_Car_Cartoon.svg.med.png

 

14 thoughts on “A tale of roundabouts

  1. OMG, then your situation is worse than mine. We need to tackle only one roundabout at a time but a roundabout comes at the rate of about 5 a kilometer, I think. Notice I use British units of measurements as well. 🙂

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  2. We had quite a few of those in New Jersey…they were called “Circles.” Most have been done away with, but alas…I live in a University town and they are giving the whole town a facelift…and yes…you guessed it…they included a small roundabout. I’ve been stuck at it a few times while dozens and dozens of students have crossed the street.

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  3. We used to call them “circles” too- and sometimes “circuses” too I think. Circles are the British name for them I think.
    I know New Jersey has a lot of universities and university towns- I have passed through a couple of them- Edison, Princeton, if I am not mistaken.
    Roundabouts are beautiful sometimes, if they have a lot of plants and flowers in them. But they need a lot of caring for- in our city, they are trying to put signals in the midst of the roundabouts to regulate traffic.
    But to be stuck inside a roundabout while students cross the roads, wouldn’t you be obstructing traffic ?
    Seems like you have a few adventures with roundabouts too ?

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  4. the round-about in principle is beautiful work of art and engineering, Growing up in the Caribbean where the round-about was used in a truly British emulation it was perfect!! the catch is those round-abouts were created with a small flow in mind -the over-population of the world has brought the circus mentality/similee to an accurate metaphore! As much as I admire the premise of the round-about this is the main reason i don’t want to drive in the UK – a round-about off a major motorway si not for the faint of heart and especially not for the tourist!! When a resident can comment on this as you do Susie , I am only left with the continued fear of driving these things as a tourist!!

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    1. “The over-population of the world has brought the circus mentality/similee to an accurate metaphore! “- how beautifully written, Bonnie. You are so right- overpopulation, more than 3 cars per family-roundabout over crowding is bound to happen. Thanks for commenting and welcome back my friend. Can’t tell you how happy I am to have you back in correspondence.

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