GOING WHACKY IN WACO          - 26/2/2006      <--Prev : Next-->


It must have been that fellow from Red River who made me become a gibbering Third World Idiot !!

He had the effrontery to say ...and I quote ..."Just because you come from Africa don't mean y'all have to act like Apes " !!

Ever since then I have been doing my best, "my level best" as they say in Ape Land, to act like I was born in the First World and not the Third !!

I suppose he was quite justified in being a tad annoyed with us as we had virtually written off his entire snowmobile fleet, but I feel he might have been a little more politically correct!

We were "first timers in the First World " and took to snow mobiling with great zeal and zest. It was rather unfortunate that "She who must Run" was 16 then, and a very new driver and decided she needed to impale Snowmobile Number 4 onto a tree !!

And it was not "She who Must Sing's" fault that she accidentally grabbed onto the throttle and sent herself and HeeHoo head first into a ditch....

and of course Favourite Uncle Dave aka "He who is totally Kamikaze" thought he could ramp the snow drift and took the scenic route via a ravine !!

It was an expensive First World Foray and it has made me nervous ever since then about showing up my true Third World colours..

And so I have avoided driving anywhere but in Zimbabwe, where our greatest dangers are the donkey carts and the errant emergency taxi drivers with the chickens on the roof !!

However, needs must, and when HeeHoo said sternly "you will learn to drive" - like a duck to water I took to driving in the USA.

You know that old saying "A woman is like a tea-bag, you never know how strong she is until she gets into hot water "

He who is Kamikaze very bravely gave me some driving lessons and off we went to Waco where "She Who Must Sing" is now gainfully employed !!

Now you might wonder what all the fuss is about, but I must hasten to add that we are from the Colonies and we, unlike the Americans, drive on the correct side of the road !!

And in addition, the closest thing we have to a national Highway back home is four lanes of traffic !!

But I have it all squared away now. "Be aggressive" shrieks She who Must Sing as I brake sharply when I see an eighteen wheeler, "don't slow down for anything" !!!

Instead of approaching a Freeway with due caution, you have to floor the accelerator, and on advice from She Who Must Sing, "if you get nervous turn up the radio "

Now there have been many moments of sheer terror, my heart has literally been in my mouth on several occasions, I have had three very debilitating experiences, when all of life has flashed before me, when I have prayed that I am not driving on the wrong side of the road.

But there are escape routes that I have found most comforting when all bravery deserts me.

When in doubt get off at the nearest exit and cry quietly in a lay- by. Always keep tissues, cell phone, water bottle and wits about you at all times.

Never ever take up eye contact with a fellow driving an eighteen wheeler, (not that it is likely - he is a hundred foot higher than you are in that itty bitty car ).... after all if you can take on a Zimbabwean taxi driver, who has been sitting in a fuel queue for four days and not earning an income, you can take on the world, girl, trust me !!

But if you are ever in Waco and you see a crazy woman driving around and around a parking lot, talking loudly if somewhat hysterically to herself, it's me, trying to gather enough courage to head for the freeway.