As if watching your car slowly disintegrate due to road salt wasn’t annoying enough, winters in Scotland can often bring out the worst of drivers. Here’s a rundown of the main culprits you’re likely to meet on your next bitterly cold Scottish city journey.
These people are the ones who only remove about 30cm of snow from their windscreen before setting off for a drive – completely oblivious to the fact that this myopic porthole they’ve created means that peripheral vision is non-existent. This makes them particularly susceptible to ignoring road signs or squashing errant pets and children.
Snow is highly likely to tumble off their roof as they drive, meaning that any unwary child or dog will get a pasting nearby. The Oblivious are also the most likely to hold up traffic by doing 40mph on a 60mph B-road, then continue into a 30mph village restriction at the same speed.
You’re driving along, checking your mirrors and blind spots as you are wont to do. Then boom, out of nowhere you are carved up by a mentalist on a KYMCO with a large padded box strapped to his back. Why didn’t I see him before? How did he fit into that gap between the Q7 and the bus?
You pull up next to him at the lights. His helmet is illuminated by the garishly bright screen of a GPS. The light thinks about changing to amber, and he is gone.
The Kia Drivers
For these people, a car is simply an appliance. They have no understanding of mechanical sympathy – if it starts, it will be driven. Hard. Lured in by the premise of a ridiculously long standard warranty (to compensate for the cheerless, plastic existence pushed upon you by these cars), A Kia Driver is the most likely to rev a car to 5000rpm within 10 seconds of starting it from cold.
Their driving style can be best described as binary – hard on the brakes, hard on the throttle. You are merely an obstacle to be slalomed round in order to get to the next traffic light.
The Urban 4×4 lover
Part of living in a democratic society is having the right to choose. However, these rights also come with responsibilities. If you exercise the right to buy a Porsche Cayenne and only drive around the city’s financial district, you should be responsible for knowing that your car is too large for the majority of tight streets and parking spaces there.
These people are usually found obstructing traffic in a notorious traffic blackspot, because their off-roader has a blind spot the size of a 787 Dreamliner. They are also the reason why you cannot get parked in a shopping centre car park as they occupy one-and-a-half spaces with their tankers.
Know variously as a Ned, Chav or Tink – and not content with burning their own cars during the summer – The Bam endures well into the winter months, seeing each fresh snowfall as another chance to perfect their Colin McRae impersonation.
Thriving off the snow and slush, your local supermarket’s car park becomes fair game for a Tokyo Drift-style drift battle between various VXR products and 15 year-old BMWs. Check the front page of tomorrow’s newspaper to find out what happens when they run out of both opposite lock and space.