The closest of close calls.
They say things come in threes.
I had to go to Crianlarich this afternoon, so off I trundle in the Honda CRV. Upon entering the village – a 30 mph limit, a blue Fiesta came up behind me at speed. Approaching the narrow bridge, and anticipating an HGV or caravan coming through my speed was reduced. Seeing the way was clear, I accelerated under the bridge with Mr Impatient behind me. The next thing, he’s overtaking me…. EH? I hate to think what speed he was doing. By this time I was back up to about 30 mph. I do hope that on his way down the road he may find a speed trap or two in the villages. Had he been remotely patient, instead of overtaking me with a hotel and junction 20 yards ahead, and numerous pedestrians admiring the scenery he would have been safely on his way, given I stopped in the village. Nutter. Now, THAT makes me grind my teeth. I don’t suffer from road rage thankfully. Teeth grinding is as close as it gets.
Then on my way home, I’m driving up the hill after Inverherive and Inverhaggernie houses. There’s a layby on the left hand side. It’s just as well it’s there. I had to use it to get out the way of the white van man that was heading towards me as he overtook some cars. Dear goodness.
I breathed a sigh of relief when I got back to the village, only to be told there was a sick member of staff needing taken to Crianlarich. So, off I trundle again. The run down the road was uneventful. The way back was something else. Going up the Dalrigh hill, past the warning sign for the right hand bend, I drove over the crest of the hill to find a white ford Mondeo overtaking a car and caravan on the ‘camel bumps’ as the locals call them. ‘Drive at a speed that you can safely stop in the distance you can see to be clear on your side of the road’ really is a bit ‘clunky’ – it didn’t even have time to enter my mind. Instinctively, I had to slam on the anchors, getting a rare taste of ABS. I was trying not to hit the kerb-stone followed by the soft verge which would have resulted in the CRV leaving the road and ending up in the field below. How the car missed both me and the car with caravan, I’ll never know. My heart was in my mouth and I had had to come to a standstill briefly. It’s the closest I have ever been to a pile up in my entire life. It would have involved 3 vehicles a caravan and a call out to our local Fire Fighters. I am thankful for ABS and all the training I have had over the years with IAM RoadSmart.
Then, in my mirror, I see a white Fiesta coming rapidly over the crest of the hill. No doubt she had to brake sharply. She was honking her horn and using international sign language at me. What could I do? How can I communicate to her what had just happened and WHY I was in a hidden dip virtually at a standstill. I drove back into the village. She made sure that she hammered on the horn again as I turned right into the business.
I have to admit I was shaking. Quite badly. All the hair on the back of my head was standing at attention and I know the blood drained out my face. A seriously close call. Please may we have a Hidden Dip warning sign, Eric? It seems ‘loony season’ isn’t quite finished after all. Be safe out there, folks!