There is a man in our neighborhood who drives very slowly. More slowly than your typical slow, too. I just HATE to get behind him, and I am sure my neighbors do, too. You basically have to stop and creep. He knows he is slow, I think, because often he will pull into a driveway to let you pass. But if you come behind such an act of kindness on his part, then you get to wait an exasperating amount of time for him to get moving again. Back up – brake – find Drive on steering column – find gas – engage gas – brake again, “just to be sure” – engage gas again, but not too much gas – proceed at about 10 miles per hour. Maybe slower.
I know the roads of my neighborhood like the back of my hand, so it always frustrates me when I get behind Mr. Creeper. “Oh, no,” I say to myself. “Not again!” Not that I drive particularly fast either. Once my daughter’s friend commented that he hates to get behind me in our neighborhood, because I drive too slow. Not true, of course, but it is all relative, I suppose. Back to Mr. Creeper. Waiting for him to get out of my way always gives me a chance to think, something many of us forget to do on a regular basis. Today, my thoughts turned to my frustration, and why I am always in such a hurry. Why does he – or whatever else slows me down – frustrate me?
Then I started thinking about Mr. Creeper. He is old. Farmed all his life. Saw this neighborhood change from farmland with the occasional house to houses with the occasional farm. Rural to suburban. Very different worlds, then and now. He, and those like him, created a good quality of life here. I, and those like me, are benefiting from it. He probably hates speed demons more than I hate slow pokes. He is probably right.
Thank you, Mr. Creeper, for making me slow down. These are your roads, really. You take all the time you need.