Why do they drive on the other side of the road?

Everyone knows the strange English tradition to drive on the left side but it is not only this: there are other consequences involved with this.
When I just arrived in Ashford, I met George, a Greek who has been working in the same company where I was supposed to do my internship; once outside the station, to my big surprise, I noticed that George’s car was a “normal” European car and not an English one. I must confess that I was disappointed because I was looking forward to seeing a real “strange” English car but my curiosity was placated by seeing the equally strange English roads.
Indeed English people use to drive on the left side and for Europeans this is disorienting because we have always the sensation that the others are coming against us.
This happens not only when you are in a car but also when you are walking because you use to look at the wrong side first, and thinking that the road is free and you cross it risking that some cars appear and run over you.
The reason why English people use to drive on the left side dates back to the French Revolution. Indeed before that, everyone used to drive on the left side because it was the best way to unsheathe the sword. Around 1300 Pope Bonifacio VIII turned this tradition as a rule for all the christian world. Nothing changed until the French Revolution, when Robespierre wanted to reverse this rule to challenge the Church. After him, Napoleon (he was left-handed) wanted to spread this rule all over Europe but, having failed the conquest of England, he could not change the typical left-side drive. The english use to say that those with a strange driving are us because it is better to drive a car with the right hand which is stronger than the left one. If so, someone has to explain me how they can apply the handbrake with their left hand.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*

* Copy This Password *

* Type Or Paste Password Here *