Tactical Parking



This is my first spring parking in Stevenage. Thus far the art of tactical parking has eluded me. But now the green shoots of nature’s recovery are emerging, I now see what I did not before. I am one of the last motorists to deposit my ride in Swingate. As such it is interesting (to me a least) to note the pattern of the few spaces left for me to choose from.

Certainly, the favourites are nearest the station entrance. That makes total sense. And in the main, the very last spaces are the hardest to manoeuvre one’s car into.

But wait. There are random spots left open to me and until now I hadn’t realised why. Trees. Leave your car under a tree for 11 hours and you can guarantee that a rich variety of Britain’s birds will spend that vast expanse of time using your roof and windows for target practice.

And so this is the reluctant role my car plays on a regular basis. I would have to surmise that my winged friends must award themselves maximum points for a direct hit on the driver’s door handle. Unpleasant and inconvenient in equal measure, that is the single greatest hazard when parking in Stevenage.

Birdlime removal is a hit and miss affair. Some lifts off with a cursory spray of water. Other splats require vigourous rubbing and still it seems it must have chemically bonded to the car’s undercoat (there is military use to be made of this I’m sure).

Unfortunately, looking through my toolbox and my bucket of cleaning aids, nothing I have has more efficacy than the fingernail of a thumb. Thus I have this uncomfortable duty to perform from time to time.

And only aggressive action with a nailbrush will clear it from the crevice where nail meets skin and where birdshit penetrates deepest. Joy.

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