Whilst bringing Clarabella and Ollie home from Nottingham last week a car overtook us so fast it looked like we were going backwards.
But we were doing 80mph.
Ollie, being an 11 year old boy addicted to fast, wasn’t impressed.
“How fast was that car going?” he asked me.
“I don’t know, about 100, 110.” I replied.
“Would this car do 110?” he asked.
“I doubt it Ollie. Plus I don’t like to go over 85mph.”
“Why not?” asked Ollie.
I then went on to explain my understanding of speeding on the UK motorways.
Granted it’s based on an encounter I had with the police 25 years ago. But I haven’t been stopped for speeding on the motorway since.
So don’t blame me if you get caught for speeding on the motorway after reading this.
Anyway, here’s what happened and the powerful learning experience I got from it:
I was 17, on holiday from college and my dad was driving up to Liverpool to project manage a job. I’d only recently passed my driving test and this would be a good opportunity for me to get some motorway driving experience and get out of the house for a day.
My dad taught me the basics like:
- When you can see the car you’ve just overtaken in your rear view mirror, indicate and move back into the lane.
- Don’t sit in the middle lane like a muppet when the inside lane is empty.
- There’s no such thing as a fast or a slow lane.
And so on.
After a couple of hundred miles, I picked up this Rolls Royce.
I’d overtake him, he’d over take me.
This went on for miles.
At speeds of over 100mph.
And then it happened.
Blue flashing lights, in the rear view mirror, siren wailing, all that jazz. If you’ve ever had that experience, you’ll know what I was feeling.
“Sorry son” said my dad, “didn’t see that one. You’ve got to pull over.”
Sat on the hard shoulder the policeman got out of his car, walked over you ours and gestured for me to get out.
My dad got out too.
“Good morning officer” my dad said, “What can we do for you?”
“Follow me” he replied and we got into his police car.
The first thing the copper said to me was:
“You do realise today’s your lucky day don’t you?”
I’ll admit I was shocked. How could getting pulled by the police be lucky?
He want on to explain:
“I clocked you and the Rolls Royce at speeds of well over a 100. When I got the speed gun out, you were at the back and it read 104mph. Anything over 92mph can get you an instant driving ban. But there have to be two police officers in the car. As you can see, I’m on my own today. So the most I can do you for is 92mph. Which is a fixed penalty fine and 3 points on your license. That’s why today is your lucky day son.”
He then went on to give me two free pieces of priceless advice:
- “If you must travel at those kind of speeds, check your rear view mirror, I was tailing you two for miles.”
- “Try to keep your speed under 85mph. That way you’re unlikely to be pulled for speeding. Unless we’re really bored.”
After we’d completed the paper work I got back into my dads car.
The copper beeped his horn as he got back onto the motorway.
I sat in the drivers seat and my dad asked if I was alright.
I was all shook up and the last thing I wanted to do was drive.
“I don’t feel like driving any more today dad.” I said.
“Son, sometimes when things happen that seem bad, you have to get back on the horse as soon as possible and start riding again. The longer you leave it, the harder it is to get back on.”
I knew what he meant.
I took a deep breath, put on my seat belt, checked my mirrors, indicated and pulled back onto the motorway.
We’d still got a couple 100 miles left to Liverpool and I was driving.
Later this “Get back on the horse” advice would land me in truly deep water and I might tell you about that tomorrow.
Right, Ollie’s back at school today so I need to get a rush on.
And you do too if you want to join my Qigong Inner Circle before I raise the price. It goes up from $37 (£22.58) to £27.50 ($45) as soon as I get Ollie off to school and get back from Louis morning walk.
I reckon about 10:30 am GMT.
See if you can beat me to it, the invitation to join us in the Inner Circle for $37 a month is here:
Bye for now