Just up Upper Maudlin Street, by the new children’s wing of the Bristol Royal Infirmary stands one of the Gromit characters, next to the long closed Sea Horse pub. I know so many people who have had a wonderful time finding all the Gromits. It’s been uplifting, it’s been strangely moving, too. In these dark and dismal times, it has provided some welcome relief. Let’s do it every year.
Watching families in general and young children in particular posing with the figures has been life-affirming. It’s the stuff of legend. Then, I drove past said Gromit on Upper Maudlin Street and I could not believe my eyes.
At this part of the road, Upper Maudlin Street merges with Colston Avenue. Traffic lights keep us safe, until an idiot with a huge 4X4 decides to park halfway on the pavement, halfway on the road. It’s a double yellow line. As traffic merged from Colston Avenue onto the two outward bound lanes on Upper Maudlin Street, they had to slow down and stop because there wasn’t enough room. Worse still, pedestrians were, at the very same time, having to walk around the 4X4 onto the busy road because so many people were taking pictures of their children. On a busy road, next to the childrens’ wing of the BRI. It’s like I made it all up.
“What the flip do you think you are doing?” I didn’t shout, as I waited by the lights. “What are you thinking about? If you carry on like this, the odds of you putting a child in the hospital the Gromits’ support are increasing. You are an idiot.”
And what were they thinking about? There is a reason why there are double yellow lines by the BRI. This is not rocket science. But in their photo album tonight, there will be lovely pictures of their kids with Gromit. Hopefully, there will not be photos in the newspapers showing people injured and killed by cretins parking where they shouldn’t park. Selfish, stupid people.
Happily, the vast majority of folks who follow the Gromits are the best people out there. The people I saw today were the unthinking worst.