Driving like a Grandad

I bought a pair of slippers the other day.

Normally one can rely on Santa to provide a steady supply of slippers, but Santa has been overly focussed on sock provision these last few years, neglecting to notice that perhaps the reason for all the socks wearing out is because they are regularly doing the job the slippers should be doing. A classic case of focussing on the symptoms rather than the cause, I would suggest.

If Santa were the Scottish Government, he’d be providing free socks for all right now.

Anyway, this is not a political blog. Nor is it a fashion blog, which the discerning reader (ie one that has read the last two posts) might be tempted to think. Be reassured that, what with my recent coat and bag purchases, and now a pair of slippers, I have completely drained my Personal Clothing and Accessories Fund for the period 2016-2020. If I need a new pair of underpants in, say, 2019, I’m probably going to have to misappropriate monies from another Fund.

NOT the Empire Biscuit Fund, for obvious reasons. I expect the Internet will agree with me on that one.

Earlier this week I found myself in discussion with my friends Peter and Pete. We were discussing commute times. As neighbours of the Finance Director, they are similarly dislocated from most of modern civilisation. However, when I mentioned my inability to make it from the Finance Director’s house to the office in Balerno in less than 30 minutes, there were raised eyebrows and questioning glances aplenty.

Then I remembered that I not only wear slippers, I drive like a grandad these days.

Most of my life, I have enjoyed driving cars with decent-sized engines, and mostly, I’ve enjoyed driving them in the outside lane on the motorway, breezing past those people driving at 57mph in the inside lane. Who ARE these people? Why do they do that?

Well, my current car is not over-endowed in the torque and acceleration department, it must be said. It contains an engine advertised as a 1.4L, which really is closer to a 1.3L.

(Dear America, engine sizes smaller than 3.5L are available! Who knew? And America, while we’re at it, why do you use metric measurements for your car engines, but nothing else? Curious.)

Accordingly, early on in the ownership of my slightly-underpowered car, I decided that, rather than trying to drive it fast, patently against its will, I would play to its strengths. Or, strength, really. Fuel economy.

Rather than getting frustrated when I get stuck behind a slow-moving truck on a narrow road, I now give thanks when this happens, as it forces me to drive more economically.

In general I find myself tiddling along, mostly in the inside lane, trying find that fine line between easing my foot off the gas enough to light up all six of the green ECO lights on my dashboard, without also grinding to a halt. Grinding to a halt on the motorway is, I’ve found, fairly economical, but relatively unsafe.

I’m now that guy on the inside lane, doing 57mph for no apparent reason. And I wear slippers. Somewhere I have a pipe too, must look that out…

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