Today on the way to my classes in Corbeil-Essonnes, I’ve had a few little scooter road-rage moments and a bit of time to cool off because my teacher was very late for a change – which is not something that is common.
This morning I left the house at 7.50am when it was still dark. When I got to Mennecy, the next town, there is a road that goes down a hill with a roundabout at the bottom. On the left is a big college and on the right a cycle path seperated from the road via a verge with a few bushes.
Just before the roundabout is a bus stop on the right and immedaitely following that a road also on the right directly before the roundabout. There is usually a minibus at the stop – and obviously I have to take care to see if someone is joining the road from the street after the stop.
Anyway – as I neared the bus stop – a young lad on a mountain bike coming from the cycle path jumped over the verge and joined the road diagonally bang straight in front of me just before the parked minibus and roundabout.
I gave him a blast of the horn – as I had to brake sharply to avoid him – and as he was in front he gave me the “finger”. At the roundabout I turn right – and so did he. He obviously forgot that even I am faster than someone on a push bike, so I pulled up behind him. He looked back at me with a sort of “look of fear” on his face so I overtook him when safe to do so just far enough away to put my foot out without being able to touch his bike. Then completed the manoever and pulled away. Obviously I did not intend to push him off or anything – I would have gone over with him, if I did! Just to scare him. Which is what happened. I doubt he’ll consider not to do it again – but when I saw how arrogant he was – giving me the finger etc I just saw red.
When I arrived at my classes, following a cold journey (it was afterall freezing), normally one or another of the teachers is there. I was there at 8.10am as usual but the door leading to the little courtyard in front of the classroom was locked, nothing unusual there – usually either one of them arrives within 5 minutes.
So I parked up opposite and waited – the gear I was wearing keeping out some of the cold.
When people started arriving 15 minutes later and there was still no sign of either of the teachers, I decided to call mine on the mobile. When I got hold of him he explained quickly that there was a problem on the train and that he’ll be a little bit late. I told the others and carried on waiting.
By about 8.50am, the other teacher arrived to let us in – so at least we could get into the warm.
My teacher arrived eventually at 9.15am and explained that someone had commited suicide by throwing themselves in front of a moving train at Vigneux sur Seine, in doing so causing total gridlock on the RER line D. He arrived moaning about the chap having decided to take his own life and inconveniece the lives of others by doing so.
So we started late and I left late from classes.
On the way back – again at a roundabout, this time near Corbeil near Moulin Gallant – a girl on a scooter decided to push in from the right directly to my side as I was going straight on. Basically I was on the roundabout and had indicated that I was taking the exit to go straight on before she’d engaged, and she was heading for the same bit of road on my line of exit from the roundabout. Quite a scary experience. Luckily she braked at the last moment when I hit the horn.
When I got to Mennecy – on the dual carriageway just before our village, I nearly got sideswiped by a pratt in a Volvo SUV – who was breaking the speedlimit and overtook me with inches to spare, which was a bit daft as there are actually two lanes.
Here’s someone who has commited suicide, and I’m trying to avoid death on the roads!