Before I write this kind of a newly learnt lesson from a rant, I must honestly admit that I’m that kind of person who doesn’t entirely agree with this saying … or else, I better say that my nature doesn’t let me follow its lead! I like to stick with my principles and, if not literally thrown with my back against the wall, I’d rather do the contrary!
So, I’m one of those mothers who still have a kid to drive to school. Many a time I find myself in the same situation, and have the same issue, which the bold Jenny Ingram from Seattle has made world-widely public after having had enough of poor etiquette in school drop-off zones.
In my sincere opinion, our school has one of the best drop-off zone settings in the country. The school is situated in a very heavy trafficked area so, apart from the need of having the road in front of the school closed for a stipulated period of time, with a policeman always vigilant, there was also definitely the need of creating such a zone, most especially because of the limited parking places available around the area too. The problem is always the same, though … there’s no respect from a number of parents who are totally entitled to use this facility but who either don’t know what ethics mean or else just aren’t aware of the real meaning of a drop-off zone. You should drive into it, moving to as far as a point you could reach to let other cars drive in behind you, stop your car just to give enough time for your kid to get out of the car and enter the school premises (which is safe in our case, as kids just have to cross a very small garden through a straight route and enter the gate) and drive along to the exit with other cars trailing behind, one after the other.
But, what do many people do? They stop their car at the very mouth of the lane, hence not giving the chance to other vehicles to enter the zone, and even take their whole time to calmly get out of the car themselves, open doors, keep packing things up in their kids’ school-bag (as the car is definitely more comfortable to manoeuvre things in instead of preparing them from home!!!) and also lead their children themselves to the door! And, an idiot like me starts swearing to myself, cause … remember … I’d have a kid in my car, using all the vocabulary in my knowledge, and would have to make some kind of a stunt to reverse or turn the car without bumping into another one, since the road ahead would be closed! Oh yes … by the way … my child would have to get out of the car in an unsafe part of the road to enter the school in time. Aaaarrrgggghhh!
Not that I’m an exemplary person but when my kids weren’t old enough to handle things like such alone, I simply used to park at a suitable parking place, even a bit far away if it were necessary, and walked them to the school myself when I didn’t have to use the school’s transport! … just saying!! :p
Oh! And it doesn’t end here! If you’d really be so fortunate to find the space open to enter you’d most probably end up waiting some more minutes alone in your car at midway because there’d be someone else who does the same act in the middle or at the far end part of the zone, hence blocking anyone who’d wish to drive to work in time after their kids would have already entered safely the premises ages before!
Trying to cut this as short as possible, I’m now going to try to come to the point regarding what I wished to primarily convey as related to the saying in my title!
So, lately I had made a hero out of a person who I coincidentally find driving just in front of me many a time! He would have always had to do some kind of a stunt like mine because of the problem, park his car somewhere temporarily, where it wouldn’t have been of any kind of obstruction, and get out of it to admonish the people whose car would be blocking the area … even if it meant to wait for them until they’d return back to it! Well … in some kind of a way he was doing me a big favour … that of relieving part or all of my own frustration knowing I’m that kind of person who would think twice before acting like he did!
But, what happened? Things are good at times, and rules are sometimes obeyed, but some behaviours never change! I totally resigned myself to the idea of having the space always available at my right disposal, so I start driving from home and in the meantime prepare myself to take any other route in case I’d smell a blockage from afar.
This made-up hero of mine seems like he doesn’t think things out the same as I do, though! One fine day, not long ago, I was the one who had my car doing acrobatics because I found HIM blocking the entrance of the zone! He unfortunately decided to follow the saying and he chose to join the wrongdoers! Maybe out of despise … maybe out of stubbornness … all that I know is that now he’s making things difficult for people who follow the rules like me! Nothing new!
Everyone tries to follow the concept of the survival of the fittest in life but who do you think is the survivor here!? Of course, one might easily come to the hurried conclusion that it’s not the ones like me! Well, as I asked in the title of this piece, is it always convenient to join others if you can’t beat them? This time round, it wasn’t such a good idea for this now ex-hero of mine to consider! Usually, taking care of obstructions in this drop-off zone doesn’t enter into the jurisdiction of the policeman in charge of the closed road, in front of whom I remove my hat for his dedicated work and patience, but the first time I caught this chap I’m talking about copying whom he’d been reproving for such a long time he ended up creating a whole, confusional jam himself, so much so that the policeman couldn’t but notice and be urged to leave his post for this person to be fined!
Morale of this story … think twice before joining the masses!