I am reminded of something which happened a couple of weeks ago. I was out walking, quite close to home in my tiny English village. Not particularly busy. And I encountered, outside the doctor’s surgery, a car which had been parked up on the pavement, blocking my way.
As I brushed past, its owner happened to come out. I mean, clearly this guy had thought he was being considerate to other road users by reducing his footprint on the carriageway, but he had forgotten that he was, in the process, making life more difficult for anybody in a wheelchair, or pushing a pram, or someone like me who is decidedly unsteady.
This chap was obviously quite nice because, as he came to his car, he apologised to me, So I replied that it was quite all right, as long as he didn’t mind the paintwork on his car being damaged, as I was not in full control any more of exactly where I walked.
I mean, I’m really beyond worrying about things. Even in my village, you do occasionally find cars blocking the pavement. In fact one such occasion was pretty much the only time that someone was outright rude about my disability. “You can just walk round it”, when every step takes a noticeable extra effort.
An interesting, even if academic, legal question. I mean, if I had have damaged this guy’s car accidentally, I suspect one of the bearings would be this guy’s negligence in placing his car in harm’s way, even if technically it were me who damaged his property.
So, next time you think you’re being considerate, ask yourself whether you’re not, in fact, being inconsiderate toward someone else.