P.A.P.A.

It is the most dangerous activity that many of us do on a regular basis.

Controlling a piece of complex machinery weighing over a ton is an awesome responsibility !

As a newly-licensed teenager, I had a car accident. I was innocently driving through a green light at an intersection, when a driver ran a red light and smashed into my car.

I was unhurt, but it was an early lesson teaching me that drivers do not always do what they are supposed to do ! The rule ‘never assume’ certainly applies to the skill of driving.

Over the years, I’ve created the P. A.P. A. guidelines for defensive driving.

P – I pray before driving. Jesus tells us that without Him we can do nothing. (John15:5). I always ask for the Lord to guide me as I drive. I bless myself with the sign of the cross before I start my car.

A – Anticipate areas where extra alertness and caution is required. Insurance studies show that intersections are risky areas. ( As I found out.) As well, increased risk occurs while making left-hand turns. I try to plan my route to avoid making this type of turn. Companies such as UPS and FedEx caution their drivers to avoid making left-hand turns whenever possible.

P- Prepare carefully to avoid distractions. I caution my passengers not to try to converse with me while I’m driving. I love conversations, but not when I’m behind the wheel ! I am notoriously bad at multitasking, and I suspect that many people are. I concentrate best in silence.

A- Always be receptive to new technology. I confess that I was apprehensive about the new vehicle we bought because it has many new features and gadgets that I’ve never used before, but as I gradually adjusted to them I see that these new features can increase driving safety.

Vehicles are constantly being upgraded, and it is likely that within our children’s lifetimes , self-driving cars may become the norm.

As we age, our brains lose neurons, and this can slow our reaction times. However, there is much we can do to maintain good reaction times. I play a variety of online brain-training games. Lumosity is the program I first used, but there are several other programs available. Being physically fit helps to maintain our reaction times as well.

So often we are told to drink lots of water and stay well-hydrated. This advice is worth repeating. As we age, our sense of thirst declines. Lack of proper hydration results in increased skin wrinkling, moodiness, and slower reaction times.

No one wants to be wrinkled and moody.

I wear driving gloves to remind me to pay close attention to my surroundings when I drive. When cars were first invented, all drivers wore gloves. That is why cars still have ‘glove compartments’.

Let us continue to pray for everyone entrusted with the responsibility of driving.

Photo by Sally

43 thoughts on “P.A.P.A.

  1. πŸ’œ I’ve Quit Driving; it may be risky trusting someone else to drive, yet, it’s more risky trusting myself to drive

    …πŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’™…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a great and timely post. I believe everyone can use these reminders. We live in an age of impatience and rush rush rush.
    I was just thinking recently how I would rather make a right turn, then turn back around to go left than to cross a double lane where one car is waiting for me, but the other cars are flying through the second lane, so I can’t make the left turn anyway. I must make sure the lines are clear. I have had some close calls. Sometimes they are not clear even when they at first appear clear.

    People can be so impatient that they wait in one lane for you, but then try to wave you along and you can’t even see if someone is flying through in the lane next to them. I’m really glad by the grace of God you were fine after the reckless driver hit you.πŸ€—
    Safety is of the Lord. Also, we must do our part to be careful of what we and others are doing. Yes, ALWAYS pray first and during travel.
    Thank you for these great and necessary reminders. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Petrina. Yes, for sure, I agree. We live in an age of impatience, and rushing. I too have had close calls, and , as you say : ‘we must do our part to be careful of what we and others are doing’.
      May the Lord continue to watch over drivers.
      Thanks for your comment. πŸ€—βš˜

      Liked by 1 person

    1. A professional driver is highly skilled indeed.
      During the pandemic, we have all learned to appreciate even more the important contributions of those who drive professionally.
      We live in isolation, and very little food is produced on our island, so everything must be trucked in, over a great distance, from the west to the east of our island.
      Newfoundland has no trains.
      Thanks for your comment, Derrick. πŸ€—

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for the advice Sally. I always pray too before driving. We have to drive defensively out there. I have a habit of waiting a couple of seconds before taking off when the light turns green to make sure no one is running the red light.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Dawn !
      That’s great advice about waiting a few seconds before taking off when the light turns green. For sure, we need to pray, and drive defensively.
      Thanks. πŸ€—βš˜

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi! Nice to hear from you. Many of us feel anxious about driving.
      My husband also asks me not to talk to him while he’s driving, so that he can concentrate better. πŸ€—

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hello Sally, I don’t know how I lost link. Yesterday, I found your blog after so many months so connected again.
        Yeah, I also prefer not to talk to my husband while he is driving. I feel driving is a big responsibility and we should be alert while driving.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Good advice! I used to live in a city where I had to make a left-hand turn at a particular intersection every day. It wasn’t unusual to see a truck barreling down the highway trying to beat a red light (but running it instead!) I learned to never just go when the light turns green. I make sure the other side is stopping. Great post! Blessings Sally!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I was in a pretty wild accident when I was 18, and learned a couple of things — the other driver doesn’t always do what’s expected, and one’s own car doesn’t always do what’s expected, especially when one hits a patch of ice. One of the rules I added after that was “always wear a seatbelt.”

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    1. Sorry to hear about your accident, Debi Sue. I was young too when I had my accident. And, I remember that in those days seatbelts were not mandatory, but thankfully they are now.
      Thanks for commenting. βš˜πŸ€—

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Good morning Sally! I like this post. I am finding that my brain is losing neurons the older I get! I have noticed my reaction time is slower about everything and on the road, I take back roads vs freeways. With everyone going 70 to 90 on a freeway, it makes me feel like I don’t stand a chance if one person messes up on the road. One down, we all go down. Happy Sunday!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi ! Nice to hear from you. Yes, I like to take back roads too.
      And, as you clearly point out, one driver’s error on a busy freeway can cause trouble for others.
      Thanks for your comment. βš˜πŸ€—

      Liked by 1 person

  7. When my children and now my grandchildren hit 16 and start driving, my first advice is “Don’t drive faster than your guardian angel can fly.” I think there is a visor clip with the saying. But in all honesty, your advice is better. Prayer first. And I want to thank you for choosing to follow my blog. I hope it encourages you in life’s journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So glad you’re OK, Sally! (If you’re on Facebook and are so inclined, check out the memory and photo of our totaled car that I – Ann Hardy Aschauer – shared a couple of days ago. It begins with “I believe in angels…”)
    Yes, prayer is always the best thing to do! I also like the idea of wearing gloves, especially considering you can’t text wearing them. πŸ˜‰

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    1. Hi Annie – I am saddened to hear of your car, and I agree that angels are protecting us – the Lord’s angel encamps around those who fear him. Praise God for his loving care. ⚘

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