Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Bad conscience

Last night I was driving around in search of a free legitimate parking space. After several minutes I suddenly saw one. Parking space is scarce and one has to be quick, otherwise someone else will take it up. I just started manoeuvring my way into the space when another car came from the other side and stopped. Either the guy thought I was going away or hoped I’d give up the space, whatever the reason – he stopped and waited.

No way! I am not giving up my space. It was a little narrow and difficult to get in, but I kept on shifting the car trying to fit in. At the same time I was watching the waiting guy closely. You never know what to expect from people like this. I was moving backwards after yet another unsuccessful attempt to fit in when I realised my left mirror was scratching the neighbouring car. A little shocked I moved away and after two more moves finally made it to the space between the two cars. The other car went away.

All this shuffling, watching, gathering my things and locking the car made me forget to check the scratch I most probably caused. It wasn’t until this morning that I got this bad feeling about it. I personally don’t care so much, but most cars are newer than mine and most car owners are not fond of scratches. I left home hoping the car was still there so I could leave my phone number and at the same time hoping it was gone, so I didn’t have to worry anymore.

The car was still there. Already from the corner of the street I could see it was densely covered with bird droppings indicating it stood on the same spot for quite some time. A parking fine ticket from several days ago made it clear the owner did not live anywhere near. By the time I reached my car, my bad conscience somehow evaporated completely. I glanced at the place where the scratch should have been. It was there. Clearly visible. I stepped in my car and drove away.

It will take some time before I can do this:

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