Nurburgring Trip 2015

We went to the Nurburgring not so long ago… for friends on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, you might have guessed! But I was bad with blogging in anticipation, and if I was bad prior the holiday, I’ve been even worse now that we’ve come back. I wish I could blame it on work or even doing some serious writing, but in all honesty, I’ve been a busy bee with a bustling social life! I’ve been to watch a football match, I went to a movie premiere (at Cineworld in Hull – not quite Leicester Square, but there was a red carpet!), I’ve been out a few times, and I’ve even been to the cinema. We took Bilbo to a Fun Dog Show, I went to see Katherine Ryan in Hull, and then Dad and I went down to London to get Dickie Mark II! So it’s been all go. My garden has been hugely abandoned and as such I’ve messed up a load of things (rocket, lettuces…), I have beastly other things (beans and cabbages), and haven’t prepared anything for the Horticultural Society market stall this weekend. Eep!

But that’s not why I’m here.

Here I’m going to tell you about Nurburgring Trip 2015.

One of two, I hope!

***I apologise in advance for my appalling Germany – I mean, I try! But I think  half of the time I am making the words up.***

I started writing this when I was sat in the hotel on the Sunday afternoon, still on our trip. I got halfway through and then stopped, and I’ve not managed to pick it up again. I wasn’t going to do a daily recap post for each day (and I think the momentum has sort of faded for that!), but I was writing a big mega post.

No such luck now!

I took my new camera with me and took loads of pictures. So I think what I’ll do here is a mashup of photo galleries – of our cars and other cars, and general Germany stuff – and a bit of holiday recap. It was an eventful holiday, even if it feels like a million years ago now; I’ll try to keep it brief. I know, I’ve written about two hundred words (can’t count) of nonsense thus far. Blame it on the wine!

Music: I will upload a separate post about the soundtrack to this year’s trip! Once I get round to making my playlist on Spotify.

Pictures & Recap: will be found below!

 

Thursday: I was at work during the day, and then I followed Lousie Brown to the rendezvous point; a pub near the docks that was apparently some sort of drug den. Scary face. It was 2 for 1 meals though!! Yorkshire through and through.

We had a friend in the car park! Obviously knew we were hot stuff!!!
We had a friend in the car park! Obviously knew we were hot stuff!!!

I parked up next to another fellow classic (I can’t remember if it was white or silver); but when we came out, I had this friend! A 350Z (we call it a “Tim car” after someone we knew who had one) with the most violent violet wheels: the photo doesn’t quite capture how far in the spokes bend. Dickie may not be as new or as fancy, but I think he looks pretty fine!

“The Gang”

What is it that Brian says to Mia in the first (and best) Fast & Furious movie? “How did the gang come together?” And she tells him off and says they’re a “team”.

Here is our gang!

"The Gang"
“The Gang”

So as you can see, we’re a Japanese team! With a heavy Subaru leaning – of course! These are taken from the prime “entry/exit” spot (zufahrt!), otherwise known as the most congested piece of German road: most congested, and most populated by fancy sports cars. I think Dickie looks pretty good!

But! I hear you ask – where is the black car?!

This time round, Dad didn’t go in “the car from the video”, and instead went in the “hot hatch”… so hot it was that it burst into flames!

Or not quite.

"That black car!"
“That black car!”

I told Dad it was bad luck sticking the “I’ve done it 2015” Ring sticker on the back of the hatch before it had actually done it. I did! And look what happened.

Friday: It was our second lap. We’d driven all the way there in a convoy of sorts: two trucks towing trailers, then Dickie and the Civic. We had braved the mad traffic in Venlo and caused so many problems doing a massive U-turn across a congested dual carriageway; we got lost when you weren’t allowed to come off the 1 to the Nurburgring and no alternative routes were in sight. We got to the track and I went out with Dad for his first lap. He said it was “orrible”! I was sat trying to pay attention to how he went into corners and what speed he could go at them, but in the end I just ended up being chucked around and having a right good time.

Dad was coming down from the roundabout when I leapt in for a second lap. We should have known something was up when the Go Pro wouldn’t work, but no! You’re in game mode – or should that be Ring mode?

For the first part we seemed to be flying; I was being flung around in the passenger seat, quite happy. Then things started to go wrong: Dad was easing off, things were passing us, and suddenly all this smoke came billowing out of the back; it lost power and went onto three cylinders (so Dad tells me anyway!). Dad pulled us over at Steinstrecke, which is at the bottom of the Carousel – a pretty fast corner where there isn’t much run off at all. Dad got out, bonnet up, and then the car filled up with thick stinking smoke and I thought he was trying to gas me! All the while we’re at the edge of the track with cars hurtling past us at ridiculous speeds. I scramble across to the other side to get out (I think a Porsche would have snatched the door out of my hands if I’d opened the passenger side!), while my phone had no signal and 8% battery. I rang and texted all I could, and then two of our friends came shooting past, Dad flagging them down. The opposite side of the track is a little lay-by for marshal cars to pull into: the two Subarus quickly reversed in there and Dad and I ran across the track (not recommended at all!) to beg for help.

What turned out to be an ‘undercover’ marshall car turned up: a lad and a lass got out and pulled a yellow flag out of the boot. We were told to stay where we were, and our friends told off for stopping, and told to leave. The undercover marshals, in a brilliant fluorescent green old-style Megane, rang for the proper marshals: they turned up, with news that the track was closed anyway.

I think in all my years as a passenger I’ve only ever genuinely stopped on the track itself once before, and that was on the first lap I went on when I started coming to the circuit again. Then a little MX5 I think it was slammed into the Armco in front of us: clearly it had been a little too occupied in looking in its mirrors at what we were doing behind it, rather than concentrating on where it was meant to be going and what it should have been doing. This time we were the last people on the track; it was eerily quiet. I went to stand out in the middle of the tarmac, looking at the writing on the road. If I’d had more battery on my phone I would have taken more photos! I think in all the racetracks in all the world (not that I have experienced many in my little life!) the Nurburgring has to be one of the nicest ones to end up stopped on: the corner we were on was in deep forest; at the right side, over the Armco (where we should have stood, and were later chastised for not doing so), there was about a foot or less of genuine ground, before a huge drop into a wooded chasm. The other side, the trees scaled the hills upwards: a track led down from the wood to the edge of the track, and it looked a serious steep climb.

The proper marshals rang for a recovery truck. Dad had asked our friends to get a tow-rope from out of the truck, but the track had shut before they had a chance. So Dad and I waited for the bright yellow recovery truck to come and collect us. We took a sad face selfie and then we were recovered! I’ve never gone for a ride round the second half of the Nurburgring in a truck before – the driver didn’t chuck it into the Carousel, though that would have been a right laugh.

The Eye Candy: 

Every year it’s the same. We go to the Nurburgring, get all excited about doing loads of laps and being awesome, and then you get there and remember it’s a lot of standing around, sitting around, waiting while the track is closed, or dithering about trying to decide whether or not to join the queue.

"Never before in all my years at the Nurburgring have I seen the queue so... oh wait, yes I have"
“Never before in all my years at the Nurburgring have I seen the queue so… oh wait, yes I have”

I swear on Friday the queue went all the way back up the last straight and snaked round the corner. Every year the Touristenfahrten days get bigger, and bigger, and bigger, and yet the exit strategy is the same: everyone must queue either for another lap (stay on track) or else to leave the track: basically you siphon off into two lanes, one of which is basically to go out for another lap. The lane to get off the track then goes up a hill (past the Devil’s Diner) to a mini roundabout, where people seem to spend half their time in an eternal loop.

So while the Ring is shut or so busy that Katy and Dickie daren’t head out, I instead fired up my camera and went looking for totty. No not boys! We’re looking for cars.

Fancies Ferraris Other Japs Porsches Scoobapoos

Others

Saturday: My Laps

This year I wanted to work on my confidence. Yeah I was giving it all “I’ll be doing sub-10 minute laps” when chatting up boys but in all honesty, I just wanted to get through a lap without freaking out/nearly crashing/being eaten alive by Porsches/wanting to bail out of the car and run into the forest.

I only did 2 laps. I know, that doesn’t sound like much at all. But for me they were two pretty good laps. The first one was really good; the second one had a really annoying mysterious caution that messed it up, otherwise I think I would have been on it. Sunday morning I could have done a few more but I think I’d been hitting the wine in Pinocchio’s a bit much the night before so I was still abed.

My first lap was so good – OK so I messed up gear changes, and got passed by lots, but I still had me a Porsche and a Rent for Ring! So pretty chuffed with that. But I felt so much more confident: I felt a lot surer about what Dickie could do, and when stuff was passing me, I wasn’t freaking out and coming to a total standstill: I eased off and just let them pass, and then once they’d all gone, I got back on it. Dad wasn’t yelling at me hardly at all, so that’s a definite improvement. In fact, I think his biggest complaint was that I didn’t get close enough to the ticket barrier!

Last year when I got half way round I used to be thinking, “right, I’ve had enough now, I’m tired”. But this time round, when we got to the mini Carousel, I was thinking “this can’t be right, we can’t be nearly done now!” After we’d finished the lap, I actually felt like I could go out again! I loved it – it was absolutely brilliant. I can totally see why everybody loves this place so much. It’s absolutely terrifying, and I think you’re not right in the head if you’re not scared of it (I mean, sure you can be an OK driver, but what about the hundred other cars on track with you?), but the head rush and adrenaline is just incomparable. I love it and can’t wait till August now!!

Sunday: was a bit of a washout, unfortunately. I was rough as anything in the morning (Pinocchio wine!!!) and then it just rained all afternoon. We went to an ice cream parlour in the afternoon so that was fun! Then it was our last Steak Nurburg of the trip… except some of us (Grandad and me) had schnitzel instead.

Monday: we came home! Epic journey home. Though in the morning we went into Adenau for the obligatory Rewe Getrankmart trip. We got lots of nice German wine and Dad got his Bitburgers, then we spent ages in the Rewe itself looking for the amazing chip spice they put on their fries. Nom! Then it was home time, and I was at my desk by 8.30am Tuesday morning!

Sheesh.

Sorry it’s taken such a long time to post. I had such a brilliant time – I did some good laps in Dickie, got to have a ride in a breakdown truck, and also got to meet my idol, Dale Lomas of Bridge to Gantry!

Can’t wait for August now! Here are some non-car-themed pics!

Until next time

Katy x

L-R (clockwise): The German graveyard across from us; the stable that Jesus was born in; friends and family at Pinocchio's; even the black hatch's stereo knew we were Driving on Nurburgring; Dad in the tunnel under the track; Hokus Pokus? Jokus Pokus?; ice cream at the gelataria.
L-R (clockwise): The German graveyard across from us; the stable that Jesus was born in; friends and family at Pinocchio’s; even the black hatch’s stereo knew we were Driving on Nurburgring; Dad in the tunnel under the track; Hokus Pokus? Jokus Pokus?; ice cream at the gelataria.

 

Our Guy in India

This weekend and last weekend, my current crush, Guy Martin, has been on C4 touring around India. Sunday nights are the best nights on telly at the moment – Top Gear, Our Guy in India, Mr Selfridge; and next week, we have The Casual Vacancy (which I’ve not managed to read yet) and Indian Summers. There seems to be a bit of an Indian theme at the moment going on.

I’ve really enjoyed Our Guy in India. He was on Radio 2 the other morning, and he was just brilliant: he’s just such a normal guy; he loves his work, and he loves working, and being busy; and he can talk the back legs off a donkey.

This evening, he went into the slums of Mumbai. When I did geography at school, it always struck me that in the slums, and not just of Mumbai but of anywhere, there was such an imbalance of priorities: they didn’t have running water or sanitation, but they sure as hell had their massive tellies, satellite dishes and Xboxes. And Guy walked through this huge slum and he too pointed out the biggest TV ever – what did he say? “It’s like Currys in there, innit?”

Yet he went to the house of a family, three generations who lived in what looked like a cube, though the neatest and most orderly cube in the world, and the grandaddy was a Hindu priest. Yet speaking to him, Guy found out that this man was so happy with what he had in his life: he didn’t need to fill his house with things, because he didn’t need those things: he liked eating, so he had all he needed to prepare his meals. It really makes you feel humble. I wrote on my other blog, notmuchofayoungfarmer.wordpress.com, about how we are a culture of rushing and hurrying everywhere: the same seems to be of having things. When I left uni, there seemed to be this enormous pressure on graduates to get jobs with huge salaries: it was as if we had do something with our degrees to make it worthwhile. As if they could only be measured in monetary gain: it cost this much to go to uni, so we have to justify that decision in making a salary which for me, someone who has a relatively professional job in the north of England, is just out of this world. I was reading in a copy of Glamour magazine about disparities in salaries within individual couples: such and such is a made-up professional and earns £70,000 a year; so and so is a bunch of random words strewn together, and earns £55,000 a year. Why must our decisions be measured by a salary? What even would you do with £70,000 a year? I’ve never shied away from spending; I like my luxury; I like my Mulberry handbags and my Dubarry boots; but I spend more of my money on books and CDs and – to be honest – diesel. Guy pointed out a huge skyscraper that was the home of the richest man in India: he had 200 servants for four people: himself, his wife and his two children; his empires in whatever, real estate or building or what have you, had made him £15 billion. £15 billion! That’s a scale of money I can’t even comprehend. What would you do with that? I think I’d buy myself a Porsche, and then be like, right, OK, I don’t rightly know what to do now. I’ll stick it in the bank. No, I’d just give it away. £15 billion! I can’t deal with that.

At the very end, Guy said, “be happy with what you’ve got.” Around me, people – people my age, people I went to school with, people younger than me – are obsessed with getting this, owning this, having this, and then making it bigger, getting it bigger, upgrading, upsizing. I was once one of them, and probably in a few months, I will slip back, and become one of them again. But at the end of the day, if you have a roof over your head, food in your belly, and people around you that you love and care for, you should be happy with what you’ve got.

Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to look at dresses on the internet.

Katy
x

Driving in a Blizzard

It’s been a while since a “Dickie” post… that’s mainly because he’s been put away for winter, and thus hasn’t done much exciting to blog about. “Dickie sat in the garage”, “Dickie was moved from the garage”, “Dickie put up a valiant defence against the mice in the shed”. Thrilling stuff.

Another reason I haven’t put much about Dickie up is that I’ve gone through a pretty tough time of late. I wrote a blogpost on notmuchofayoungfarmer about my decision to leave the PGCE. It wasn’t an easy decision, but it was definitely for the best. Having my weekends free to do with as I please, and not being tied down by school terms, means I have a bit more freedom to do what I want to do – including blogging, and maybe some track days!

But there aren’t going to be any track days at the moment! We’ve had an awful lot of snow just dumped on us. I love the snow: I love how it acts as a blank page to the world, treating fields and roads the same, whiting everything out. I love the quietness it brings to an otherwise chaotic, noisy world. However, I certainly don’t like driving in it!

The past few years we’ve not had much snow, and so I’ve missed out driving in it quite a lot. I’ve driven through a few snow showers and a dusting on the road, but not when four or five inches have been freshly laid. The other day, in my little yellow Seat, I had a little spin on a nasty corner on the back roads. That was scary, but it was a fairly wide corner, and there was nothing coming, so I just span 180 to face the wrong way and come to a stop. I laughed rather than cried, though my heart was pounding.

So when I was driving through a blizzard the day before yesterday, I was taking it very cautiously. I know at least to keep the car in as high a gear as possible to stop my wheels spinning so much… nobody else seems to know this though! The car in front of me whacked their hazards on and stopped halfway up the hill from Fimber Roundabout; because obviously that’s the most sensible thing to do on a snow-blanketed hill with a blizzard raging round.

Driving home in the snow was the scariest thing I’ve done in a long time: it wasn’t that I was afraid of my own driving, but rather I was afraid of everyone else on the road. People were weaving around like madmen, staying in first gear and spinning their wheels like mad. And worst of all, the blowers in my car stopped working, so my windscreen fogged up like something more exciting than hyperventilating and excessive swearing was happening inside.

But I made it home! And it’s been snowy since: Windy Farm is most definitely white over: very much Snowy Farm.

Maybe I should get Dickie out! After all, the snow-related memes seem to speak for themselves…

IMG_0721

Day 6 – The Last Day :((

And so, our holiday has come to its end! It is Easter Monday and it’s time to go home. This is the saddest day. Bearing in mind I am writing this retrospectively about a month later, it is a bit random. We drove down to the track and it was a good deal quieter. Ma and I went to the Rewe in the hope it might be open, but only the bakery was open. No instant choccocinos for me! 😥 Good job I have the Dolce Gusto waiting for me at home.

Gonna miss this view from our hotel!

IMG_1130

 

And a gorgeous view of Nurburg castle! This time we didn’t try to go round the castle on Easter Monday, having learnt from past experience that is shut on Mondays!

IMG_1072

Dad had 4 laps left on his card, and he was adamant he’d take Andy the M3 guy out, so what then ensued was a lot of elaborate stalking around the car park, arriving too late as he was being ensnared by his various other stalkers. It made me laugh to see this one woman in particular, who made a beeline for whoever had the flashest, noisiest or clunkiest vehicle, and would hang over that poor unwitting victim until she gained a lap. I think Dad secretly was a bit downcast that she hadn’t wanted a go in his car, but if he’d been in the blue car with the stickers, she’d have been all over him like a rash, and I think I would have had something to say to her then, namely, get off my Father! We eventually executed a James-Bond-style manoeuvre to get Andy in the black car, and off they went, for what Dad later called the worst lap of the entire weekend, as he was stuck being a Porsche that was so far up its own arse, it wouldn’t let him pass.

Then it was time for home! We went back to the hotel, Dad loaded the car onto the trailer, I scribbled on Edgar’s whiteboard a goodbye note, and we went back to the track to pick up the rest of the convoy… who failed to understand the meaning of ‘convoy’, and so we had a tense few minutes waiting up in Nurburg while Father was increasingly losing his temper and I had to go off on a mission to retrieve them. And then we were off! The epic voyage home!

We went to Venlo for our Maccy D’s, and then on to the ferry port. I had to do some seriously dodgy reversing in the ferry, and the guy was laughing at me – whether it was because I was reversing badly or because I was a girl driving a Subaru. We did get some seriously appreciative looks from some seriously dodgy looking dudes on the motorway, and even more appreciative when they spied we were two birds! And ‘some seriously’ seems to be a key phrase. I did try to do my role proper as the rear of the convoy, letting the two trailers in front out.

On the boat, I was tired and hungry and seasick, and generally had a rubbish time. I think we all were a bit drained from our holiday, and on a general downer that it was over. Then it was time for bed, to hopefully not fall out in the middle of the night. I can’t believe it’s over!

Day 5, Part II – Sunday

Apologies for the severe delay! I have been absolutely inundated with uni work: I had my postgraduate conference this week in which I had to present a paper, and then I have a series of deadlines coming up which all require serious attention, which I’m sure I’m not going to deliver until three days prior to handing-in day.

Anyway, Easter Sunday feels like a million years ago! In my last post, I had just been taken on my fastest passenger lap around the Ring in a seriously sexy BMW M3 and Dad was plotting how to afford one of his own. When we got home I searched through all the hundreds of photos online hoping to find one of me in either of them but to no avail – though I found a couple of Dad looking like all his Christmases had come at once! I haven’t checked any of the websites for a long while now so there maybe could be one lurking somewhere…

So Dad and I staggered about in a daydream for a while, and told anyone who would listen how amazing those two BMWs were. I think single-handedly we assembled a fan club.

There was a do with a Skyline coming off the track. I was standing minding my own business when everybody suddenly vacated the car park and congregated around the exit from the circuit. Drawn by the crowd I went for a nosy, and saw a blue Skyline with smoke pouring out of its bonnet, the windscreen splattered with extinguisher foam. This was a highly exciting spectacle, clearly, for all present, and Father got his elbows out and wrangled his way under the bonnet. He ain’t happy unless he’s mechanicking, and he ain’t happy mechanicking unless it’s on somebody else’s car.

I took a photo, but couldn’t get close enough to really capture the moment!

A Skyline Aflame

Then, in a highly impromptu move, I was coerced into getting into Russell’s Evo… Dad came to strap me in and he had his serious face on, which I can only presume meant he was worrying that we might crash and his only child might die. I joked to Russell that Dad hadn’t given him “the talk” and he said he’d already done that! Which I hope was a joke… The Evo is so stripped out it’s basically a machine: there were so many dials and little boxes with various numbers, most of which I think are there for show, rather than doing anything… 😛 Other people had complained about the smell of the car, but having started out doing track days in Johnny the Peugeot, which stank and about gassed you, it didn’t bother me in the slightest. I don’t like wearing helmets, though I appreciate they’re there for your safety, but I always feel a bit claustrophobic, and even with the open-faced ones. It also wasn’t my own helmet, which is always a bit awkward…

Anyway, Russell decided he was going to chase this Skyline, and he was faster, but the Skyline was up for a bit of a play, and was all over the place, shutting the door every time it opened a bit. Cue me sort of being thrown about and squealing – when I wasn’t laughing like a madwoman. It was probably the most fun I’ve had on a passenger lap in a good while – except maybe when Russell dropped into the Carousel midway round and it spat us out early from the end and I thought I was going to die.

Post-Evo Lap Triumph!

 

This is a photo my mum took, and I think the expression on my face – relief, mainly – says it all! …I look a bit flushed though…hmm……

It was almost closing time when we got back, and so I jumped out of the Evo and jumped in Dickie, and I did a lap, adrenaline sort of coursing through my hands, trying to not be influenced too much by the laps I’d been on previously. And I was so pleased to do my best lap yet! I still messed up the kink, where Dad says I take completely the wrong line, but overall I was a lot faster. Obviously I entered the Carousel at the beginning. I actually think, from being terrified of it last year, the Carousel is my favourite part of the circuit. I like the fast early straight as well, as it’s early enough on for me to have not made too many mistakes so I can feel at least midway confident, and get a bit of speed on. Dad was impressed, and he recorded it, and said it was 11 minutes. So I am probably the only person who can say she shaved four whole minutes off her lap time at the Ring!

We went to Pinocchio’s again for tea. Look at the grosse bier!!

Dad Massive Pinocchios Beer

 

I am pleased to say that I finished my massive beer when even some of the lads didn’t! You can also see a bit of the random table decorations that they have in Pinocchio’s – great swarves of chiffony fabric randomly strewn across the table top – that Mum hates, and went on about for ages afterwards. Clearly it’s a fashion in Italian-Germany!

And we’re nearly at the end of the holiday… :(( sad times!

“I must be driving James Bond’s car…”

No, not an Aston Martin!

Rather, in the past couple of days while I’ve been driving around to and from uni and work in my little bright yellow Seat Ibiza, I seem to have had so many near misses (that weren’t my fault!!) that have led me to believe that my car has an invisibility switch that I’ve somehow pressed and I can’t find it to turn it off!

The Seat

 

Invisibility mode engaged!

Near Miss #1

My grandfather – my own grandad! – nearly wiped me out pulling into our track – our track!! – cutting the corner, when he randomly decided to go to work at ten to eight, when Mum and Dad were still in bed and I was running a bit late for work.

Apparently, Mum later told me, he didn’t even know it was me! Who else in a bright yellow car is driving down our track – a private road!! – at ten to eight on a weekday morning?!

Near Miss #2

This one isn’t much of an invisibility crisis as just a rant about indicators, really. Driving down Cranbrook Avenue, I was waiting at the mini roundabout on Inglemire Lane, giving way to the right like a good little driver, when a car was coming from straight on. I say a car, I mean a Mitsubishi Warrior, who is clearly exempt from indicating because all and sundry understand that it has every right of way. I spied my opportunity and nipped across – except the Warrior actually meant he was taking his right at the roundabout, and cutting across me. Cue lots of screaming and wild accelerating!

Near Miss #3

The road I drive on, the B1248 from Hull to Malton, is a fast road, and a dangerous road. It can be quite a busy little road, and a lot of people seem to think they can drive as fast as they want and take the corners as wide as they want because they’ve driven that way every day for the past million years. But if they have driven that way for the past million years, then they should recall the amount of accidents caused and lives claimed. And my very own little life was nearly claimed when I was trundling home at a sensible speed, and round a corner up ahead I saw a blur of a red BMW come tear-arsing round the corner. My first thought was “bloody hell how fast is that car going?” and then my second thought was “omigod he’s at my side of the road and not slowing down!” How he missed me I’ll never know; he managed to slide across to his side and get past, and a little retrospectively I gave him an angry pip all the way down to Fimber roundabout.

Near Miss #4

In Scagglethorpe, the lovely little village with the fantastic Anglo-Saxon name, there is a corner in the middle of the village with steep grassy banks, and if you come from Setty way, due to the cars parked at the side of the road, you can’t see if something is coming up the little hill. I peered as far ahead as I could (please recall I am probably not 5 foot 2 on a good day) and pulled out to go round the cars. Just as I was passing the second of about twelve cars (slight over-exaggeration), a car came round the corner. Because I was committed, as my driving instructor always told me, I carried on going (I don’t do reversing!), hoping the car might stop and wait for me. Or at least slow down. But no, he just kept coming, and coming, looking straight through me… and I had to extremely quickly nip into the tiniest gap after the last of the seventeen parked cars to avoid being sat on his bonnet – or maybe worse still, his lap. And when I gave him the appropriate “omigod what were you doing have you no manners chivalry is dead” he completely blanked me. He was wearing severe Deirdre Barlow jam-jar glasses and did look like he had been plucked straight from the 70s, so maybe he couldn’t see me at all… maybe I had momentarily drifted into a time warp… wormhole… Maybe the Seat has time travel controls too!

So after all that ranting… drive safe guys! Is chivalry dead on the roads? Potentially…