An Encounter in Traffic

February 18, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

My journal entries will not always have to do with photography and for anyone who only wants to see images and the stories behind them, I apologize.  Whereas my intention is to use this space to convey personal reflections in addition to discussing photography, I present the following encounter.

I had left for work later than normal and traffic was heavy but it was really backed up to turn at the light on S. Marietta Parkway. Normally, whenever I am turning at a light and there is traffic, I try to stay as close to the car in front of me as I can. I do this because I figure it is the best way to get as many cars through the light as possible. I find it very aggravating waiting 2 or 3 cycles at a light and you see people ahead who leave multiple car lengths between them and the car in front of them as they go through the intersection

In any case, here I am waiting at the light and, after 2 cycles, I am lined up to get though it this time. For whatever reason, I ended up leaving a little space between me and the car in front of me as we proceeded. Seeing how nature abhors a vacuum, someone who had decided their time was more valuable then the rest of us took the opportunity to drive pass everyone else waiting and cut in front of me. For me, this is way more aggravating then people who don't turn quickly enough and only slightly less than people on a crowded interstate who drive down an exit only lane and cut into traffic at the last second.

My immediate reaction to this person cutting in front of me was to ensure he knew in no uncertain terms how I felt about this behavior which would involve my car horn and a well deserved gesture. Now, I should let you know that I keep a crucifix hanging from my rear view mirror. I keep it there not as some magical talisman that is going to protect me from harm or get me to work on-time. I keep it there to remind me of how I am supposed to treat others and there is nowhere I need reminding of that more than when I am behind the wheel. 

As my hand was rising up to express my displeasure with this fellow, my crucifix caught a bit of light from somewhere and flickered. I love it when we are given little reminders of the Creator's presence. I continued to raise my hand but now my gesture turned into a sign of the cross. And not some sarcastic "Bless You" sign of the cross. This was heart felt and in that moment the curse on my lips transformed into a blessing to this other driver. I wished him well, said a quick prayer that he arrived safely and any stress in his life was lightened. I drove through the intersection with a smile on my face.

I can only hope he had a good day. I know I did.


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