What follows is a confession.
Before I start I just want to say sorry to the person involved. My actions were not intentional. In fact I didn't realise that I'd done anything wrong until about 12 hours later. This makes me even more of an eejit.
A few days ago I was traveling Thelma and Louise style with my seven year old niece, CurlyNiece, who has the same kind of surreal chat as Eddie Izzard, so is quite entertaining company on a long journey. We were going to collect my daughter who was bonding with her Grandma in East Kilbride, which is just outside Glasgow. I'm not being condescending by telling you where EK is; the geography is important to the story . Make a note of it.
We reach Perth, the halfway point in our journey when the story really starts. As you bypass Perth, you reach a large and extremely busy roundabout called the Broxden Roundabout. It is pretty big and has all the commercial heavy traffic taking goods north hurtling round it. No-one has ever stalled on the Broxden and lived to tell the tale. Except me and the subject of my story, that is. In fact I'm not even sure that the subject of my story is alive to tell the story. You'll find out why.
As we approached the Broxden we saw a tall and quite beautiful girl standing on the roundabout. Yes, right in the middle with the traffic zooming past her. Goodness knows how she got there; she must have been the only living thing to have made it across there since the roadbuilders left when the bypass was opened in the 1970s. She was holding a sign with her destination on it.
I panicked. This girl was going to get herself killed. I had to save her. (I'm nothing if not a drama queen, you know that). Either a juggernaut was going to mash her pretty head under its eighteen wheels or a modern day Peter Sutcliffe was going to offer the lone female a lift of a lifetime.
Scrrrreeeeech! "Hello- get in!" I screamed across the traffic as I slammed the hazard lights on and upset about a dozen lorry drivers behind me as I tried to find a place to stop that wasn't going to get us all killed. She eventually made her way across like one of those hedgehog road crossing arcade games, and got in the car to the soundtrack of honking horns and muffled swearing through lorry windows. She was American.
"Where are you going?" I asked after I had managed to get my heart-rate slowed to a non-critical level, and introduced myself and my traveling companion (who was incidentally looking at me like I was a maniac). Our new friend was going to Fort William. Fifty miles later, and after a lively conversation I dropped her off at what I deemed to be a much safer spot where she wouldn't have to risk her life to get a lift.
Later that day I was driving back up the same road, this time with two seven year old travelling companions. As I drove back up to the Broxden Roundabout at Perth, a terrible realisation dawned on me. I actually felt sick. I had taken the girl in the completely wrong direction.
I had effectively delivered her a good fifty miles away from Fort William than she was at the outset.
I hereby want to apologise not only to the lovely girl from San Francisco who was hitch-hiking to the West Coast on her own, but also to all Americans. I have in the past, and indeed on this blog, made fun of the geographical lack of talent of the American race. Yes, you may not know the difference between Ireland and Scotland, you may think that Scotland is a city in England, and my American second cousin didn't know that milk came from a cow when he visited Scotland when he was eight and saw some cows out of a train window. I also convinced an American lad when I was working in New Orleans that although I was twenty one in the US, I was really only twenty at home because of the time difference.
Yes, American cousins, you may not know bugger all about stuff outside your own country, but I must confess live on this site that I do not not know where towns in MY OWN country are. I am worse than you lot.
And I may have delivered one of your own to her death, just outside of Easterhouse.
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