Swindon birthday

I enjoy driving. My dad used to drive long distance frequently. We’d often rush from The Isle of Man to Switzerland or various parts of France in a crammed Citroen. I got very used to being stuffed in a car going at terrifying speeds down long straight roads. As an adult I have periodically played with the idea of getting a private hire licence and driving an uber between acting jobs. So far, basic caution has prevailed. It would be an expensive venture monthly in terms of car and insurance and if I ended up doing a small scale tour for tuppence halfpenny a week I’d end up haemorrhaging money on an unused car. My insurance is already criminally expensive because I’m too honest and they know I’m an actor. The hoik up to cab drivers insurance would likely be excruciating.

I do find driving relaxing though, and I’m happy to talk to strangers so it might be a good solution for income top up if I could put in the hours. Although I still live in hope that that sort of thing will become less and less necessary as I start to book more and more work. Eternal idiot optimist.

Right now I’m glad of my bashed up little Suzuki. It cost me nothing really, apart from those hideous insurance premiums,and it goes like the clappers. And since I’m not working today I’ve agreed to chauffeur Tristan to Swindon for his grandfather Michael’s 92nd birthday. 92 and still going strong.

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I’d like to think I’ll pull that off. I suspect I might have to ease down on cake and up on kale. And perhaps exercise more and drink less. Although red wine doesn’t seem to have slowed Michael down. And this evening it’s steak for me. I’ll start the diet tomorrow, guv.

It’s not so bad, steaming out to Swindon, there in an hour and a half, steaming back full of meat and coffee in the dark. Tristan has an audition tomorrow morning or we might have stayed the night with Michael and Doreen, although it’s a little much to put on them. Steak and good company, and the petrol was covered. That’ll do. I drove like a maniac all the way home so I might have picked up a few letters from the cameras. But so far I’ve always been lucky despite inheriting my father’s ways behind the wheel. I think it’s because when I learnt to drive they were always there. Those yellow buggers, and the little lines in the road – they were always something on my radar. With apps like Waze existing now, it allows you to drive even more safely despite them. Before they existed I reckon over half of my focus whilst driving was on the sides of the roads, scanning for them. I always point them out as a passenger. Now I have something on my phone that even warns me about police cars hiding on bridges. It’s a brave new world. I can focus on the cars around me, and perhaps get taxed less frequently if I do end up behind the wheel of a BMW full of paying passengers in the near future.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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