Driving on the left side of the road-not as easy as you might think. When Maurice would drive in Ireland I became horribly anxious, stressed out, and tense. I found myself leaning to the right side of the car as if I could get the car over by my body movement and I spent the whole time saying, “Get over, get over!”. As as result, I did most of the driving. Would you believe that on the first day I hit the curb with the front tire twice? You have to be especially alert at all times to make sure you aren’t going to hit a curb or a car. It’s really nerve racking. One day we were tired of all of the driving we had been doing and decided to visit a little village, Ardvert, near our exchange home. As I pulled into an easy parallel parking spot trying not to get close to the curb, I hit it anyway. When we got out and looked at the tire we saw a bubble or hernia on the side and went to a convientally located car repair shop to buy a new tire. I told the man who looked at our tire that I bet he had a lot of Americans come in with ruined tires and he said it was good for his business. He sent us to a nearby restaurant for coffee which turned out to be a very cool place that we never would have found on our own. Later in our trip Maurice was driving and he said, “You know, I lived in England for a year so I do know how to drive on the left side of the road. And I never ruined a tire either”. Do English and Irish drivers have the same problem in the States?
One day we had to take a detour and by mistake ended up on a very narrow road with high bushes on either side and had to take turns backing up when a car was met coming from the opposite direction. One time a doctor with a light on top of his car which said “doctor” on it came and Maurice didn’t want to back up as it was our second time in the same section but the doctor pointed to his light and said he had priority. I had to back up a very long way which I didn’t do well. We followed the doctor back to the original detour and went way out of our way to finally reach our destination. I have to say that driving in Provence when we lived there did get me used to narrow roads, just not roads of one lane.
The next day we went to the very lovely Beara Peninsula. I have to say I liked it much better than the Ring of Kerry or the Cliffs of Moher. There were hardly any people on the road and the scenery was fabulous.