Weekly Photo Challenge: Careful

Car Parking In Italy

I love the way Italians park… it looks like a parking competition for blind people.  Cars are pointed in every direction, half on the pavements and half off, facing in, facing sideways… fitted into spaces so tight that the only way out would be through the sun roof.  (Italians) park their cars the way I would park if I had just spilled a beaker of hydrochloric acid on my lap.”                                    Bill Bryson – ‘Neither here Nor there’

There is no parking discipline in Italy because an Italian will gladly block you in, double-park, use the bumpers to nudge other cars out of the way, scratch and graze other parked vehicles on the way in or the way out and generally disregard all of the normal civilised rules of parking a car.

It took me some while to find somewhere that I was reasonably happy with and found a spot away from the busy part of the town on the end of a street where hopefully no one could park behind me because I didn’t want to get back to the car later and find it sandwiched like this…

French Parking 1

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24 responses to “Weekly Photo Challenge: Careful

  1. The French are the same.

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  2. And the Dutch, at least in Amsterdam. I swear they lifted up some of their Smart cars to park them. 🙂 –Curt

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  3. Australians are so civilised and boring!

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  4. oh wow! that’s a good one!

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  5. I still find it miraculous that the cars fit into these spaces. You have to admire the precision driving (or the gall when bouncing off strangers’ bumpers).

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  6. I just had a friend return from a trip to Europe, which included Italy, and she reckons that driving and parking insanity there gave her confidence in driving: while before she was not bold to fit into tight spots she now goes for it, says to self – “yep, I can fit into that spot”, had no sun roof but did need to take deep breath, hold it and get out of car tightly parked :). Here in Australia one gets booked for parking on footpaths…

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  7. I can’t parallel park. I look for valet! 😉

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  8. Some great illustrative photos. When I rented a car in Italy I couldn’t understand the mandatory insurance at first but it quickly became apparent why!

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  9. This is why I am waiting for a car manufacturer to invent vertical take-off!
    Such a good (and funny) take on the challenge Andrew 🙂

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  10. It’s a bumper to bumper sort of a thing. I’ve been in this situation before….crazy! Thanks for sharing.

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  11. Just like the “queues” at Mont St Michel, it makes you proud to be British.

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  12. The Greeks are pretty good at it too. Pavements are for walking on and lines in the road are for guiding pedestrians!

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  13. Ha ha ha. I had no idea. This is h.i.l.a.r.i.o.u.s.! 😀 😀 😀

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  14. That is one of my all-time favourite quotes. I lived in Bologna for 3 years – it really resonates. When I came back to the UK I forgot myself and geeeeently bump parked – the looks I got should have turned me and my car into an evil smelling puff of green smoke.

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  15. Some time back here in Ballarat I saw a person sandwich a car in and when the driver came back he called out for some big tough bystanders to come and help him. What they did was pick up the offending car and place it sideways in an alley. Everyone laughed and the guy who’d been sandwiched thanked everyone and then sat back to look how the offender reacted. It was a young person of the female persuasion and she screamed and ranted and cried and all the tough guys came out all innocent and helped her get her car out. A lot of people sat on footpath coffee spots and looked and laughed and took photos. Lot of fun.

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