Ella was vocal. Very vocal!
She ranted at a long line of slow heavy rush hour traffic.
Cyclists and motorbike riders were not spared the rough edge of her tongue either.
Cars changing lanes without indicating, or any drivers who dared to cut into the small space in front of her windscreen were treated to a long stream from her litany of language more suitable to the gutter, than the front seat of an upmarket Mercedes-Benz A-Class with a twin-turbo V8 engine.
Perhaps if she had been ready to leave at the pre arranged time, things might have been better.
Ella WAS NEVER ON TIME. You might say she liked to make an entrance. Arriving at a theatre or concert hall with everyone milling around, would mean she would go un-noticed. Arrive late and the whole place was aware of her entry and walk right through the auditorium to take her seat in the middle of the second row!
This behaviour went on for years.
Holey Buckets! She ranted with more passion and conviction than Kate, singing I Hate Men from Kiss Me, Kate
Her husband Ralf, was by comparison, a dormouse.
His great passion in life was his car. This time, the A-Class Merc. Ralf washed and lovingly caressed it with a chamois until dry, each evening before driving it into the spacious garage to rest overnight. Some friends teased that it was clean enough to sit in the middle of the living room floor!
Ralf loved his Ella. He must have. Listening to her broken record on repeat ranting, on a daily basis for thirty five years, warranted more than sainthood.
He was dressed and ready, in fact Ralf had been ready for the previous two hours.
A leisurely breakfast was enjoyed, the daily newspaper read and the crossword completed. The beloved car stood to attention in the driveway. The windows and lights all gleamed like crystal, even under the bonnet had a little run over with a duster.
Now as he finished another cup of coffee he heard the size two footfall on the stairs. Involuntarily he tensed. The ranting (at him) began before the door to the room opened. He half wished he had given in to the sudden childish whim to hide behind the window drapes. He didn’t.
They were ready for off.
“I wonder if Ella remembered the marathon was on today?” thought Ralf. He was sure she had forgotten that half the roads in the centre of the city would be closed for the duration. They were not going into the city as such, but needed to drive through it in order to reach their final destination. Never worry, he had a plan.
Traffic was heavy on the motor way and always slowed down as it approached the city. He had planned to take a circular route and avoid the closed off area. Of course, this was all planned a few hours earlier as he read the newspaper and saw the route the marathon would take. Ella was busy upstairs with girly stuff – hair, make-up, and which of her fifty pairs of shoes to wear. They had not spoken since Ralf had taken the breakfast tray up to her a few hours earlier. Ella liked breakfast in bed. Ralf liked that too. It meant a calm quiet start to his day as he sat to eat alone at the kitchen table.
“You are in the wrong lane!” bellowed Ella. “You should be over there, in that one.” The ranting had begun, and it continued. The higher the rant the slower the traffic moved, until it finally slid to a halt. Nowhere to go.
At this stage Ralf was behind an articulated lorry, in the rear view mirror he could see a wall of lorries approaching. One stopped behind him, and another two drew up along each side, They were completely surrounded. Ella did not like being closed in, she was claustrophobic at the best of times, the ranting reached a crescendo.
This outing was not his idea of fun, he would have much preferred to potter about at home for the day. He switched off the engine – they were going nowhere. They could not, even if they wanted to.
Slowly, calmly and silently, Ralf opened the driver’s door and got out. He put the keys in his pocket, closed the door and turned without a backward glance and walked away.
He had had enough!
Road Rage was suggested by Padmini, who I am sure is a perfect passenger and would never rant while her husband was driving. She has re appeared from the shadows to rejoin us, despite being busy with family commitments and other pursuits. I look forward to reading what she and all the other active member have to say on the LBC topic, for this week.
In expressing their “road rage”, I like the way people, at least, in the US like to excercise their middle finger.
Unfortunately that happens over here too, and not exclusively when in a car!
Haha! Well told tale, GM!
Thank you Nancy. Sometimes I look at a topic and wonder how in hell I am going to approach it, I think this one worked.
Good one. I’ve been tempted to do that same thing – walk away – several times.
When a back seat passenger, I have often wanted to get out, in order to avoid the squabblers in the front seats and I am not talking about family!
This is a great story, GM. Love it, the calm side o’ road rage.
blessings ~ maxi
Maxi, I was trying to find a different angle.
I love that man
I know a man who is bullied like that and I am sure there are times he would love to run away!
I enjoyed this. The raging was done by her – the final response was calm, measured and unanswerable!
Col, you got it, I wanted a different angle to the usual.
no it’s the semi-silent bullies you need to be aware of. The ones that slip something into an ordinary conversation that creates a scene you are not expecting. Be in the car, at home or out with friends/family.
Cathy, I think we all know somebody like that. They are best avoided.
Very good story. I thought you were a pretty good driver, very calm and capable, when you gave me a lift last year in Dublin.
Maria, that all seems so long ago now. I was that direction a couple of months ago with my sister and thought of you and your mum. The shopping centre was undergoing some major changes at that time.
Jenny’s the road-rage expert in our household, when she drives she’s always ranting about other drivers’ stupid behaviour. I’m the more philosophical one, shrugging my shoulders and accepting that other drivers can be careless, the same as I can.
Since I travel alone most of the time, there is nobody to tell me if I rant about other drivers. Anyway the problem will not worry me for a while, since I am forbidden to drive at the moment. 🙁
By the way, your blog clock is an hour fast.
Thanks, Nick. I delved into the bowels of my blog to change the time and succeeded in replying to your comments before you sent them!!! 😉
When I was a child, my mother would drive all of us kids the 12 hours to her parents house to spend the summer. If we acted up in the car, she would simply pull off the road and make us sit in the hot car until we had decide to behave properly. It didn’t take long for us to shape up!
I remember my father pulling over to the side of the road and threatening us that we would all have to walk home if there was another gug out of us. Then followed silence, and when he had enough of that he started us singing….
‘I love to go a wandering along the mountain side’ and ‘It’s a Long Way to Tipperary’, started us off and by the time we each had a suggestion, we were pulling up in the drive!
Three cheers to Ralf. I would have loved to have been around to see what happened to Ella!
I bet she was found still ranting and not realising that Ralf had gone for good!