Created: Thursday, 12 October 2017
Written by Don Quay
The well maintained open roads and lack of traffic in France can cause an inadvertent lack of attention.
Roof down, a bit of music, lots to look at. Hypothetically only. No admission, you understand.
Ironic, really, given that one of our 'drivers' in moving to France was to slow down.
As a bit of a tangent, it took me a while to NOT be irritated by people at the head of the queue in the pharmacy or boulangerie engaging the staff in conversation rather than cracking on with their purchase. Again - a step back to an age when people had time for each other.
A recent addition to these rural parts are traffic-calming traffic lights...
They work on a speed sensor and cause one to stop if exceeding the limit on approach.
They do not necessarily control junctions at all (though some do both). Approach at the designated speed and you'll breeze on through. A little bit quick and you'll be brought to a halt - a pause for thought, perhaps.
Personally I like this development. More effective than a warning sign (on me!) and kinder than a speed bump ('bosse de vitesse').
No camera or €90 fine - though a word of warning; there are plenty of these as well. And increasingly, unmarked police cars with cameras.
And if you have ever been stopped in France you'll know it's a salutatory experience to be directed to a cash-point to enable immediate resolution of a fixed penalty traffic violation.
The moral in all this? Aller doucement, or 'go slowly/gently'. I can get behind that.