Thursday, September 2, 2010

roundabout denial

Pedestrians never have the right of way in New Zealand. Up until recently I have been in denial about this truth.
Let me explain...
  • When we first moved to New Zealand I remember running with Jason. We were crossing a street and I proceeded to run as normal. I was aware of the cars around me but was confident all would yield to me as I ran though the intersection. Isn't that what always happens? Nope. I ended up stuck in the middle of the road with cars honking and Jason wondering why on earth I didn't give way ( or yield for Americans)? Well, because pedestrians can basically cross the street as they please and cars know that? Wrong again.
Since I've been here I've had several mishaps while running and every time I am boggled that
New Zealanders didn't get the memo on who does what at an intersection.
  • Just this week I was walking to work wearing high heels, skirt, and carrying 2 huge bags-you know the kind of thing you don't want to be wearing when it pours with rain? I enter the intersection because the car that is approaching has no blinker on. Wrong again. He tuns in front of me and honks for about 88 minutes at me. Are you kidding me? It's pouring rain cut me a break!
Turns out I'm the one who didn't get the memo. Because New Zealand has roundabouts, and not stop signs, there is a continual flow of traffic at intersections. Pedestrians are expected to wait until it is clear. They do not have the right of way. oops.

The only time a car gives way to a pedestrian is at Zebra crossings. If you've been to any British influenced country then you know all about these:
note taken.


{kim} said...

Thankss for the lesson. You better be careful out there!

Mallory Jo Searle said...

I'm a little nervous to be moving to a foreign country where I KNOW I will make a fool out of myself on a daily basis....saying things like "garbage" instead of "rubbish" and we won't even talk about fanny packs :)

You and Jason look like you're doing great. keep the good times rolling!