Let’s clear the air immediately- alcohol and driving should not come together. And please believe me that this little anecdote isn’t intended as an endorsement of the practice. That being said I am prompted to write this we post having read the start of another’s blog that was titled “IT WAS LIKE DRIVING IN THE 1930s” and began…”Or so my son said, not quite understanding that neither his father nor I were even alive in the 1930s.” http://bloglily.com/2006/07/20/it-was-like-driving-in-the-1930s/

It reminded me of a wonderful trip my brother and I took years ago with a couple of our children. We were travelling over the road from Gisborne to Wairoa via Tiniroto, the same road we, as children travelled with our father when we holidayed at Lake Waikaremaona. Now we are not quite reaching back as far as the 1930s but the late 50s, but the differences between roads, cars and driving habits 50-odd years on are not insignificant.

Anyway, to the trip with our kids. We were quietly trundling along and started to reminisce. It went something like… “…our first stop was the Roseland (a pub not 10 minutes down the road from our starting point) where dad would have a jug while we waited in the car. We’d maybe miss the next couple of pubs but always stopped at the Wairanga a Kuri pub (“let the car cool down after the Gentle Annie Hill”) where Dad would have a jug and we would have a raspberry and lemonade and a bag of chippies. Back in the car and on to Tiniroto for lunch where Dad would have a jug or two and we would have a pie, raspberry and lemonade and talk to the cockatoo. We’d probably stop at Marumaru for another jug for Dad and then …” at which time one of the kids in the back said… “Shiiiit! Wasn’t it dangerous Grand-dad drinking so much?”. My brother stepped heavily on the brakes to bring the speed down to around 40/50kph (25/30mph) and muttered something about not much damage would be done at THIS speed regardless!!! It was a nice, funny moment but had a bit of truth about it. Our car was an old Vauxhall that was built of plate steel, it was driven by a man who seldom reached (let alone exceeded) the speed limit (which was 50mph [30kph] at the time), and every other car on the road was similarly built and driven (although not necessarily by a driver who drank!). Nobody wore seat belts. Few exceeded the speed limit (because they couldn’t in a society in which a large proportion owned older 4 cylinder ‘tanks’).

Our father frequently drove after having drunk a bit of beer but we never had an accident (in fact he had a fault free driving history of  some 75 years!). Coincidentally the only motor accident he was involved in was when a drunk walked in front of him while he was driving past one of the hotels he occasionally had a drink at.

Again, I do not intend this anecdote to endorse a drink-drive habit. Alcohol and driving DO NOT MIX.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s