Drivers and Benches


Dear Drivers:

I spent 9+ hours driving yesterday.  Fortunately, after each 3 hour clip, I had the pleasure of landing either with amazing friends, or finally back at my home.

If any of us spend that much time driving any one day, we’re sure to have some moments behind the wheel when we find ourselves sharing the road with folks that may have a different view of the rules and courtesies that would seem to govern travel.  For the most part, I just don’t get that troubled by the left lane owners of the road, the I’m within two inches of your bumper tailgaters, or the I’m too busy talking on the phone to use my directional asphalt kings (or queens).  Surely none of those things make me happy, but it just doesn’t bother me like it used to.

While I was doing my driveathon, a sleepy little town just about at the Canadian border set itself on coming to terms with an outrageous and horrifying outcome, the genesis of which began behind two steering wheels.

You can read the details here (Apparent Road-Rage Incident Sparks Deadly Shooting in St. Albans), but the short summary goes like this…

Man has domestic dispute .  Leaves house and gets in car.

Man runs red light, nearly hitting a car driven by a local woman.

Woman follows driver a short distance till both cars stop and both drivers exit their vehicles.

Man shoots woman 6 times in the head and chest killing her.

Man pleads not guilty to second degree murder.

I started to read some of the comments that were being generated by this tragedy.  Some centered on the argument for or against more gun control.  Some blamed the man for such a disproportionate and insane reaction.  Some blamed the woman for instigating the event.

None of them mentioned that a nine year old boy was going to wake up every day for the rest of his life without a Mom.


I had to take some pictures tonight for a very cool project I’m working on (more to follow).


As I was wrapping up, an elderly couple approached me, the gentlemen held high a small digital camera.  Imagine a very thick German accent with boroken english and the conversation went something like this…

Hallo.  May we bother you?

Of course. Would you like me to take your picture?

Yes, yes.  We have not been here three years.  This bench.  Three years. (Very big smile)

Oh that’s wonderful.  Welcome back.

Yes, yes.  Thank you.  We are very happy to be here yes.

So he shows me how to work his camera and I snap a couple pictures as they hug each other on the bench.  I show him to make sure he is happy with the outcome.

Oh thank you very much sir.

I’m very happy to help and I hope you have a great evening.

Yes, thank you.  It has been three years…And we are alive!

I went back a little while later to take a picture of the bench.  And I drove nowhere today.


obervationally yours

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