Last night I got caught in the sort of traffic jam that you never want to see at the end of the day. The sort of jam where you’re moving so infrequently you could safely go for a short walk without worrying about interfering with the flow of traffic. So, as I had reached a point yards from a sliproad, I decided to take my chances with a back road tour of north Cheshire. I came off the motorway, headed towards Warrington and aiming for Lymm, knowing that this would get me going in the right direction for home without all the hassle of not actually moving.
Heading into the outskirts of Warrington I reached a junction where a right turn would take me off to Lymm, as I wanted. The raod might have been wide enough for two lanes of traffic if not for the fact that the drivers heading straight and left weren’t especially tight to the kerb and on the right, several people had parked half off the road. So, I made a minor course adjustment towards the right, remaining on my side of the road, and waited for the light to go green.
At this moment, coming from the direction of Lymm, arrives an articulated lorry wanting to head towards the motorway – the way I had just come. He made the turn and got as far as me – and then starts swearing. This guy was easily in his 40s+ – and yet I was suddenly confronted by a blathering psychopath who might as well have been a drunken teenager in overtly combatitive mood. He nudged forward and I tried to pull a little into the left again and he finally got the space to squeeze his cab into the gap. Apparently I was a f*cking idiot or something, what with my being on my own side of the road trying to turn left and he trying to drive an enormous lorry up a minor road in heavy traffic and with parked cars forcing him to come over from his side of the road to mine. Oh yes, that was my fault.
Do haulage companies specifically look to employ people with a hair-trigger temper and attitudes akin to football hooligans? I had no issue with my own conduct, because I wasn’t doing anything wrong – but to have already contended with heavy traffic and a delay that meant I was going to miss an appointment, I didn’t need abuse. I hope that the lorry driver was headed to the motorway and I hope he got stuck in the jam or the one that formed on the opposite carriageway filled with rubbernecking nosy-beggars.