Saturday, July 3, 2010

Priority of the right

I feel uneasy when my kids are on long trips. I breathe a sigh of relief when they are safely there.

Shanna is driving from Boston to here trying to take advantage of the boys' sleep cycles. They have a video player to amuse them but they like to move after a while and don't suffer in silence. She left 12 hours ago, which means if she were me and didn't have her paasengers she'd be here already.

Josh is driving from Cologne, Germany to Paris, France. I mapped out several iternaries for him (as I am a map freak and love to do stuff like that). One going through Belgium, the other mainly through France but going by some cool cities and through Luxembourg. These will probably be ignored. He is with co-workers who hopefully understand French driving patterns better than he does. Their hotel is right across from the Loevre. Wish I were there.

One difference is the placement of traffic lights. Here they are in the middle of the intersection overhead. If I am the first car, I pull up to the crosswalk or all the way to the intersection. In France, if you do that, the light mounted on the side, will be behind you. It took a while for me to adjust to that and prodding by irate drivers behind me to go when I couldn't see the light.

And their cryptic "Vous n'avez pas la priorite de la droite!" In France, there is the priority of the right meaning people coming in from the right to a road get preference. Here we have the unspoken priority of the straight: meaning if you are on the road already, others coming in from the side will just have to wait their turn. In traffic circles (which are more common than lights), they will have "Vous n'avez pas la priorite de la droite!" as it ends up with less accidents. In Belgium, European capital of traffic accidents, that isn't so clear and it is the unspoken, priority of whomever jumps the gun first.

Maybe I should not have included Belgium in his road trip. Damn. I hope he bought the map I told him to.

Well they do what they want to do.

Steve told his mom who lives in Seattle, last night that she is a great-grandmother again. She of course was surprised. What, was she pregnant??!!!! Photos are being sent to her. She did get to meet Oliver in person when he was 14 months.

But I will have 3 babies here soon!

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