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Road Madness

For the few of you who actually follow these little wanderings (and thank you, by the way, to those people – I do enjoy trying to write something every week and if only one person reads it I probably think it is worth my effort) you will have noticed a lack of content last week. This was predominantly because the Lovely Wife and I were in North Cornwall and the nearest phone signal of any kind was a quarter of a mile away on the nearest piece of beach, which was not really conducive to blogging. So my apologies for that and we are now back on track now with a bit of luck.

We came back via the currently roadwork afflicted M3 which is a road often traveled over the years to and from more entertaining things and people than, say, the normal commuting grind that is the M25 (or Road to Hell, as those of us with a liking for the works of Chris Rea tend to think of it). I have been stuck on the M3 enough times to not make the mistake or slightly absurd suggestion that I might actually like this road but it is fair to say that it has given me some amusement over the years. A few weeks back I related the tale of Barney the vulture, but he was not the only odd thing on that road.

Usually this is in the form of other road users. While it is off course important to focus on the road ahead the M3 is one of those roads where the oddity is more common. Partly, that might be what lies once you have left it and entered the wilds of the New Forest – or at least the motor museum at Beaulieu. Certainly that explains the happy moment as I sped past Thrust II, at that point the ‘car’ holding the World Land Speed record in my little yellow Fiat Cinquecento (Sporting). OK, Thrust II was on top of a low loader but it was still fun to think about it that way. It also explains the occasional adapted minis (the real ones, not the huge BMW versions) that sometimes you see (the ones covered in false turf, or my personal favourites the ones that look like giant oranges, a promotional body kit several of which I recall are in the collection at Beaulieu).

I am not sure it explains the sofa, however. It was a rainy night driving back in the rain from Andover on the M3 when I realised I was overtaking a sofa. Unlike Thrust II however, this sofa was not on the back of anything but bumbling along on its own in the left hand lane. The driver (if that was the word) was sitting in his leathers and helmet and strapped in with his steering wheel in front of him. He (or indeed she) was not sharing the sofa with anyone. But it was a bona fide sofa being driven at speed on a motorway. On reflection it was almost certainly another mini adaptation with the sofa ‘body work’ grafted on top of the mini base and engine; but it was the weirdest thing. I wonder if anyone else has seen it, or indeed any other soft furnishings masquerading as a form of transport?


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