Saturday, February 16, 2008

New Thing #36--About Face

Before I started this project, when I was still compiling suggestions, my friend Dani challenged me to "drive backwards all the way down my street". I thought about doing it, but there are too many cars parked on my street for me to navigate with confidence. However, the idea interested me so today I drove backwards through a parking lot.

Finding an empty parking lot isn't easy, but I headed to my local high school. It didn't have too many cars on a Saturday afternoon. The lot has a drop-off lane in front of the building that empties into a lot with two rows of parking. I drove the correct direction until I entered the lot itself, then pulled into a parking space and backed out going the wrong way.

I didn't know the proper etiquette for driving a long distance backwards--do you turn around and look directly out the rear window, or do you rely on your mirrors? When I was about halfway down the first row, I saw a car pulling out of a parking space about a dozen spaces away from me! I thought I was going to have to reverse course, but instead I followed the car out of the row; it was going the correct way and I was going the incorrect way! I turned around the concrete island at the end of the row still going backward, and finished by going to the end of the second parking row. I then put the car into the correct gear and left the parking lot.

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