In most places I’ve lived, people jaywalk, be it crossing against a light or in between intersections. While I’ve heard stories on weird places like Seattle where people actually obey crossing signals, I want nothing to do with that. London, I’m finding is no exception. However, there’s a slight difference. Unlike cities in the US, the pedestrian has no rights. Try crossing the street anywhere when you don’t have the light or a zebra crossing and the cars will try to run you down. Add to the fact that there’s no such thing as a straight road or a non-blind crossing (there’s always some sort of obstruction) and lots of small cars, and it’s a stressful experience. So it’s amusing to see people crossing the street here as it’s more like running for their lives in the hope that a car doesn’t come out of nowhere. Even having a crossing light doesn’t always help since they last about 5 seconds and there’s no flashing sign. It goes from green to red and 2 seconds later, the traffic signal goes red-yellow and the cars are revving their engines.

On a similar note, I’ve found an answer my previous question about which side of the pavement people walk on. Yes. They walk on whatever part of the sidewalk they want to. And they’ll walk into you (or play the game where you both hit the same spot and then sort of move side to side until you each pick an opposing direction). I’ve decided that, since I need to get used to cars driving on the left side of the road, I’m walking on the left side of the pavement and I’ll be the aggressive one when it comes to confrontations with the people who are just plain confused.

And a final, unrelated note: my work permit has been approved which means I will be able to legally work in the UK. Exciting! When I get back to the US, all I have to do is go to the consulate and get a work entry thing in my passport and I’m completely legal.

6 Responses to “Jaywalking”

  1. Mom Says:

    And you’re telling me about crossing streets because…..?????

    Your Worried Mother

  2. matt Says:

    Gasp! I would never suggest that I’m one of THOSE people trying to cross the street against the light. Oh wait, ummm, never mind. How else am I going to learn about which way the cars are coming without a little adrenaline? 🙂

    Errr, rather, this is all just based on observations, I swear.

  3. Mom Says:

    Just for being a smarta**…we are keeping your cats!


  4. matt Says:

    This is my blog. You can say ASS here.

    And don’t mess with MY kitties.

  5. Leaky Says:

    Actually, I’m keeping the cats.

    Didn’t you hear that Maya makes a great baby sitter hehehehe!

  6. Mom Says:

    So, Matt. No matter what happens, you don’t get your kitties!!! Sorry, kiddo.