The US is a country that does not value the pedestrian. There. I have said it.
Evidence of such:
Today as I was walking my dog–after at least an inch of rain last night–this woman chose to go THROUGH the pothole on the dirt road and drench us in water as opposed to avoiding it. Yes, she did stop and over a meek apology (first time that’s ever happened) through the window of her van, but I was still furious. Why? Because she was driving at too high a speed. You should not drive fast on dirt roads, you fucking dumbass. It is hard to stop and you put people walking alongside them at risk. Not to mention that they are riddled with potholes and you can get people and dogs WET!
No doubt she was in a big rush to get home and do her yogalates and was on her cellphone to save time and that three seconds she saved by spraying me and Darby with filthy water really helped her keep her day in check.
Well you know what I say to her, Buy me a new pair of pants, lady, because you ruined the ones I was wearing.
And this is certainly not the first time I’ve been drenched. I’m on the roads a lot. I walk my dog. I run. I get out and take long walks to think. To commune.
But people seem to find this odd. What are you doing walking? These roads are for CARS.
Oh yeah. Right. Sorry. Silly me. Please, spray me with that puddle for being stupid enough to walk.
The other thing is that even people who WALK and hike (you have no idea how many people do not know that the person going UP the trail always has right of way–it just makes sense) seem to have lost any sense of propriety.
People, you must walk AGAINST traffic. Do not put me at risk when I am out walking or running by walking with traffic. Because if you do, I’m just staying the course. Staying on my side of the road and it will be you and your silly-ass out on the road with the cars at your back. Every day I am met by adults and children (which worries me because they should be learning this now) walking with traffic and these are narrow roads with no shoulders.
You ALWAYS must walk against traffic. It is unsafe not to. There. That is my parental moment of the day.
And while I’m at it, walk SINGLE FILE when others are sharing the sidewalk, trail, etc with you. Do not fucking continue to walk two or three abreast as you see me and my companion coming at you (even if we have moved into single file, which we would have). How DARE you? And this is not just young people. I’m met by this group of women walkers in their 50s and 60s who should know better who refuse to give way on the sidewalk. But I make them do it anyway because it’s rude.
This is me, heading at you, running at top speed, against traffic, with my elbows out.
This was a lesson I learned as a small child from my mum, “Walk single file girls. Don’t walk two abreast girls. Single file. Single file.” And we did.
Because we cared about the comfort of others.
And I still do.
But afterwards I fume at the arrogance, the uncaring of people who think it’s more imporant to drive top speed on dirt roads and spray unsuspecting people, than it is to slow down to a decent speed.
My god. It has happened.
I am officially a curmudgeon.