Travelling on the N340 today and watching varying styles of driving, made me think it would be useful to compile one of those lists for how to drive elsewhere – in this case in Spain.
1) The obvious one. Speed limits do not apply. Or if they do, they are the minimum speed for driving.
2) When you are merging onto a dual carriageway or motorway, it is important to go as quickly as possible and push your way on in front of someone, especially if it causes them to ram on their brakes. Those little white lines that indicate ‘Give way’ certainly do not apply to you. Someone already on the main road does not have right of way.
3) In the unlikely event that a Spaniard is driving in the inside lane of the dual carriageway/motorway, when approaching a merger, they should immediately speed up to prevent as many vehicles as possible entering in front of them.
4) Stopping distances are for wimps. Tailgating at 120 kmh, or more, in the outside lane is the way to go.
5) The obligatory joint, shot of your spirit of choice (eg brandy, anis, whatever) is how to start your journey.
6) The most important thing is to get to your destination as quickly as possible. So drive quickly and don’t stop when you feel tired. It doesn’t matter if you doze off for a few minutes, no-one will notice.
(The above two points go some way to explaining the meandering style of some drivers and the erratic speed changes).
7) When your mobile rings – answer it immediately regardless of where you are and what speed you are going at. It could be important. You can then slow down of course as you chat away on your non-hands-free mobile.
8) And don’t forget when you want a fag, take one or both hands off the wheel to faff around lighting it. When you have done that, continue to drive with one hand on the wheel so that you can enjoy your cigarette.
9) If you are looking for somewhere, make sure you slow down without warning, speed up when it is the wrong exit, and then slow down again to check the next one. Finding out which exit you need before you start the journey spoils all the fun.
10) If someone is attempting to overtake you, immediately speed up and do not let them.
11) If you fail, and they do succeed in overtaking you, you need to get them back straightaway.
12) Wait until the very last minute to swap lanes to avoid the toll road. This has the added bonus of cutting across all the vehicles who want to use the toll road. Similarly if you are speeding along in the outside lane and want to take the next exit, it must be a last minute dash across the lanes.
13) Indicators are unnecessary. They are a waste of time and whose business is it where you are going anyway? So never use your indicators unless you are bored and want a little diversion. Especially at any roundabouts – where – if you do use one, make sure it is the wrong one (assuming you know how to indicate at roundabouts).
14) If you are suddenly going slowly – for whatever reason – do NOT put on your hazards or give any indication that you are dropping speed.
15) This last one is perhaps the most important. If someone is foolish enough to indicate to pull out into your lane – DO NOT LET THEM. Never pull into another lane to allow someone to move out. Even if there is enough room for them to pull in front of you, you absolutely must speed up so they are stuck behind a slow-moving vehicle. Keep them out at all costs and watch them lose speed and be totally unable to pull out. Oh! So! Funny!
This is a tongue in cheek guide, I hasten to add. I neither recommend nor condone anything on the above list.
We also saw numerous examples of every single one of the above in a two hour drive today.
Is that because we drive a Land Rover??