Driving in the Dordogne – Never again!

At last, we were off on holiday. Boy did I need it. We had decided to go to Dordogne in France and had left it so late that we were going for just over a week. To be honest, we were still arranging aspects of it the day before. I had stated that under no circumstances was I going to drive, so Andy booked a car! When we arrived, we went in search of the car hire place and were duly given the keys. It took us half an hour to find out how to open the boot, because Andy refused to go and ask for help. Then we were off (sort off). Initially all went well. We actually went into third gear, albeit the windscreen wipers came on every time Andrew turned at a junction. However, despite Andrew’s optimism I had an overwhelming sense of doom. Every time he changed gear we veered to the right.
‘What do we do when we have an accident?’ I asked.
‘If’ replied Andrew ‘and we won’t.’
Ten minutes later, we had an accident. Taking out, not one but two wing mirrors and the glass from our own.
‘You speak fluent French.’ said Andrew ‘Deal with it.’
I couldn’t remember a chapter on car accidents and dealing with insurance in my A level text book. A rather unimpressed French woman pulled up and handed me back the glass to my wing mirror. The people at the local cafe seemed much more lively; a nice accident to brighten up their day. As I reattached the glass, I spotted an irate French driver swaggering towards me. He apparently was very cross about the damage to his car. All the while Andrew stayed in the car. After a few minutes of being shouted at and showing an interest in various cars we were on our way.
‘If I’m about to make a mistake, tell me’ chided Andrew.
‘What am I clairvoyant? To be honest, survival instinct kicks in and terror prevents me from finding the right words.’
Ten minutes later I shouted
‘Wrong side of the road!’
‘What do you mean?’ he asked.
‘What do you think?’
We arrived at the hostel at last. I had to sit for a bit to allow the trembling to subside. As I sat in the room I heard Alex’s voice from the bathroom.
‘Mum I’m stuck. I can’t unlock the door.’
I just wanted to go home.


~ by envisioningutopia on August 15, 2012.

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