I have to tell you about my friend.
She tries really hard to fly under the radar but somehow, despite her best efforts, she is surrounded by drama.
A few weeks ago she had to take her daughter for an ultrasound of a wobbly ankle so drove to the clinic in her massive 4-wheel drive. When she was approaching the clinic she hunted for a parking space and managed to find one that was a tight squeeze but through sheer determination, she managed to manoeuvre that 4-wheel drive into the tiny space.
After the ultra-sound that of course revealed there was nothing wrong with the wobbly ankle and confirmed to my friend that this entire trip was not only a waste of time but also a financial drain, she climbed back into her car and started the engine. My friend is a good driver and a cautious driver and she put the car into reverse, looked into the rear vision mirror, saw nothing so started to reverse. Then there was a little bang. A bit like a ‘tap’. She turned her daughter. ‘What was that?’
‘I think you hit something.’
‘There was nothing there’, said my friend. She climbed out of the car and went to look and can you believe she had reversed into a very tiny, very low-to-the-ground, sport’s car. She was sure she had only been driving at a snail’s pace so wasn’t expecting any damage but she had a quick look at the little car and was relieved to find no damage done. She climbed back into her 4-wheel drive, drove away and thought that was the end of it.
But it wasn’t.
Because the very next morning at 7am there was a knock on her front door and there to greet her in her dressing gown were three policemen wearing bullet proof vests and carrying guns and tasers and handcuffs. ‘What’s the problem?’ she asked all confused. When she had been formally identified they asked her if she owned a 4-wheel drive and read out the number plates.
‘Yes’, she said.
‘Were you parked in Parraween Street at approximately 2.45pm yesterday’.
‘Uhm. I don’t remember. I think so. Oh yes, I was; I had to take my daughter for an ultra-sound’.
‘You are charged with ‘Not Reversing with Safety’ and ‘Failure to exchange particulars’. She couldn’t believe it.
‘A passerby, who has requested to remain anonymous, saw you commit the crime and informed the police of your vehicle’s registration number’.
‘But I checked the car and there was no damage so I drove off’.
‘It is illegal to leave a crime scene without leaving a note’.
‘Well I didn’t know that was illegal’.
‘You are being charged with failing to leave a note and with reckless reversing’.
‘Reckless reversing? I couldn’t have been going more than two kilometres an hour’, she said totally shocked.
‘It’s considered reckless ma’am, if you hit another car’.
‘I couldn’t see the other car. It was too low to the ground and if there’s no damage, why do I have to leave a note?’
‘The law states you need to exchange particulars with the other driver’.
‘Oh for heaven’s sake. I thought that was only if you caused damage’.
‘You’re being charged with not reversing with safety and failure to exchange particulars’.
And my friend was telling me this story as she was driving me around in her massive car saying, ‘And you just couldn’t believe it. Those three policeman were at my house for an hour and a half; nearly two hours. I asked them if they were going to read me the Miranda rights but they said I’d been watching too many US crime shows. That’s not what they’re called here. So I asked them if they were going to read me my rights, the Australian ones and they said they already had. I said, ‘could you read them too me again because I didn’t hear them. I wasn’t concentrating’. One of the policemen was writing down everything I said and at the end he asked me to sign it. I said, ‘I can’t sign that. You’ve written it like I’ve got a lazy way of speaking. I don’t clip my vowels like that; I speak properly so I’m not signing it’. So they were there nearly two hours. Three of them. Nothing more urgent or pressing going on in the Sydney crime scene apparently’.
And now my friend has two fines totaling nearly $500.00 for unintentionally committing two offences.
Some days it’s just hard to stay out of trouble.
A quick and easy pick-me-up for a harried day is this caramel popcorn that can be made quickly and easily with very few ingredients. This will have you smiling again.
Serves: Quite a few
Degree of Difficulty: 1/5
Cost: Very inexpensive and a little seems to go a very long way
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup popcorn
- 250g butter, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 4 tbspns honey
- 1 cup pecans, roughly chopped
Take a large baking tray and cover it with baking paper.
Heat a large saucepan over medium heat and add the oil. The oil is hot enough when two popcorn seeds dropped into the saucepan spin slowly. When this happens add the rest of the popcorn and cover with a tight-fitting lid. As the popcorn pops, lightly shake the saucepan. When the popping stops, place in a large bowl and remove the unpopped seeds.
Make caramel: Combine butter, sugar and honey in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 to 7 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Bring mixture to the boil. Boil, uncovered, without stirring, for 5 to 8 minutes or until light golden.
Remove from heat. Stir in pecans. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and stir until popcorn is coated. Spread over prepared tray. Set aside to cool. Break into pieces. Serve.
This recipe has been adapted from a recipe found on Taste.