Many thanks to our great friend (and high-minded painter) Andy Baird, who both conceived and jump started this attempt to contemporaneously record at least some of the eventings of one move abroad. Regarding content, the narrower column on the left is the supposedly more timeless and reference stuff; ongoing entries are in the larger-width column on the right of the script below - following the (red)


by-line below. The plan is for these at least to be augmented over time.

It should also follow, therefore, that the most recently added post will always be at the top of this right-hand column; so if you want to get a flavour from earlier times, scroll and start NEARER TO or EVEN AT THE BOTTOM (only, please, please if you chose this option, allow yourself a series of snack-breaks; it can be repetitive, and boredom is guaranteed to increase with intensity of effort!)- but ANY comments are not only also welcomed ->but positively encouraged

Remember this folks ......

Remember this folks ......

Sunday, December 19, 2010

definitely worth re-Blogging ........

Don`t actually know who the author of the following IS (was forwarded to me from another Blog), but thought it deserved a wider distribution. 
Agree entirely with the comment, though I would point out the, unmentioned here it must be said, highest Portuguese standards ON MAJOR ROADS AND MOTORWAYS regarding lane discipline. Don`t suppose that would really count for too much in an out-of-control situation, mind. 
AND, as regards anyone coming here / hiring a car FROM 2011, make sure you read up and try to prepare yourself for the new SCUT road-charging regime. Now that IS scarey .......

Posted on  by connal

Today was a day when the immortals took to the roads. We have days like that on the Silver Coast. These beings look and behave just like the rest of us and are hard to spot until they get behind a wheel.
It then becomes possible to get as up-close and personal with an immortal as you are ever likely to be. Their typical driving style is to park on your rear bumper and stay there no matter what speed you are doing while they chat on phones or rummage about in the glove box. Their face looms so large in the rear-view mirror it is almost like having another person in the car.
Of course what sets them apart from us mere mortals is they can drive with the certain knowledge of being immune from death or dismemberment. Which is all very well but I wish they’d stick to astral travel or at the very least find their own road network.
I had one behind me this morning who was masquerading as a mother. Her disguise was flimsy – she had a child seat in the back and a cuddly toy that careered across the polished dashboard like a rabbit on ice every time she went into a corner. It had fluffy paws spread-eagled on the plastic as it tried desperately to get a grip. Its deep dark eyes looked pleadingly through the windscreen and begged for help. I could do nothing but hope the toy and the rest of the car’s contents weren’t going to land on my children’s laps any time soon. Sorry but the rabbit was not my responsibility.
I have noticed these immortals act collectively, as if they do a quick phone-round in the morning and decide on what tactic to adopt that day – like ignoring stop signs, cutting up cars on the roundabouts or stopping to answer the phone on a blind corner. The trick for surviving as a normal driver is to spot the day’s first idiotic manoeuvre and then to watch for it happening again. Chances are it will happen over and over. This is possibly just an in-your-face move to remind us of our own mortality.
One of their favourite tactics is to scare the shit out of oncoming drivers by drifting across the white line just as they get close. They often wave in apology in afterwards but I’m not fooled. They’re just hiding their laughter.
The result of all this immortal mayhem is everywhere – tilted lampposts, trees with half the trunk ripped away, tyre tracks across the centre of roundabouts and the fact that panel-beaters seem to be rare, I guess because there is not much point repairing something that will only get banged up again next week.
I don’t like generalisations so I’m not going to say there are a lot of bad drivers here. But if you are renting a car in Portugal do take all the insurance on offer. You may well need it. The immortals seem to like living here just as much as we do.

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