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Almost Horizontal: Part I

June 7, 2009

One of the things I like about the Netherlands is their laid back attitude towards certain things that we Britons and, indeed, many other European nations tend to be a little uptight about. It’s strange really, because the Dutch do get extremely on edge about some things, like driving for example, but they have  a very different way of letting their anger rise to the surface and bubble over. It’s not unknown for a driver to follow you after you have annoyed him, only to get out of the car at a red traffic light in order to admonish you for your inability to drive properly. He won’t stab you or ram your car like the Brit version of road rage, it’s slightly more civilised than that and it happened to me once when I had to pull out of a side street onto a busy shopping road.

Unfortunately a lorry needing to unload had parked half on the pavement and half on the road, thus blocking my view of any traffic that may be approaching from the right. I had checked to my left before starting to edge out slowly in case anything should be coming from my blind side. Unfortunately though, a car that subsequently came from my left thought that I was wrong to pull out so slowly and, in true Nederlander style had, instead of slowing and giving way to me (poor hapless person that I was in a rather awkward plight) put his foot down and then screeched to a theatrical halt once he was dangerously close, stopping his De Lorean (yes, really) a picometre from my own vehicle. This kind of behaviour usually has the opposite of the desired effect upon me, which is to say that I continued edging out but went even slower than before in order to annoy said road lout as much as possible. This showed a profound lack of judgement on my part as it actually succeeded in having the desired effect on him in that he blew steam out of his ears accompanied by a loud ferry horn blast from his nose and followed me to the next set of lights which, most conveniently for him, turned red just as I got there.

I watched in my mirror as one of the doors of his Wankmobile opened up into the sky above him and a rather lanky, skinny version of Martin Clunes stepped out. I quickly pressed the ‘all doors’ central locking button and slid my electric window almost closed to half a centimetre. (He might even try to squirt me with battery acid – you never know.)

When he reached my door, he said something Dutchie along the lines of ‘Didn’t you see me racing towards you at breakneck speed, you idiot woman?’ I replied as calmly and superciliously as I could ‘I’m sorry, I don’t speak Dutch,’ which caused more steam to come at high pressure from his aural orifices, and then drove smartly off as the lights changed whilst he was left trying to formulate same insult in English at the side of the road. At this point, the line of cars behind him all started honking loudly for him to get back in his Time Machine that was sitting abandoned like a bird with a broken wing and to stop blocking the traffic. I had passed the next set of traffic lights before any of them had moved which lead me to believe that by the time he had jumped back in and managed to put the wing back in place the lights had gone back to red.

Ha ha, Smug-but actually-crapping-her-pants-a-bit English Woman: 1; Furious Dutchman: 0.

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 8, 2009 5:29 pm

    I’d love to have seen that. Fall back on the old British ‘Those who speak Foreign just need to be spoken to loudly and clearly and from then on ignored in superior manner’.
    Wankmobile. Snigger choke snort.

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