So we are heading out of London this weekend (gasp) to see the lovely UK countryside as in all of our travels, we haven’t seen much of the UK. We are heading to a city called Cheltenham and are considering hiring a car and driving around to some neighbouring (and highly recommended) little towns. In anticipation of our suicide missionroad trip on the other side of the road, I bought a little book that should help us dechiper the various road signs/warnings as on our last road trip through France we didn’t have such a book and quickly realised that our Canadian drivers training isn’t necessarily globally recognised.
Anyhoo I was flipping through the pages and most stuff seemed pretty intuitive (except I loved that they have one sign telling you to look out for frail pedestrians) except when I came to the pedestrian crossing which must have been named by some bird aficionado. The crossings are called a Toucan, Pelican and Puffin….(three birds which I believe aren’t even found in the UK..)
The Pelican is the oldest type of pedestrian crossing and has a button for pedestrians to push then indicates by a green walking man figure when you can walk and a red standing man figure when you shouldn’t.
Then we have the newest one which is the Puffin…the puffin is extra schwanky as it detects movement by pedestrians through a little sensor above the button and manages the lights accordingly so ti wont change if no one is there and will give extra time for those frail pedestrians. Apparently the Pelicans will be replaced by the much fancier Puffin thus making the Pelican extinct (in the UK anyway)
Then the Pegasus…aka the Equestrian crossing. Yes, there are enough people riding horseback through city streets in the UK to warrant them getting their own crossing lights (for real! check em out there are some down by Buckingham Palace).
And last but not least, the Zebra crossing….surprisingly this is not for Zebras (since horses have their own) but for pedestrians, crossing without the aid of lights…they paint black and white Zebra (click here for the English pronunciation of it…it’s apparnetly not zeeeee bra as I say it)
Hmm I am not sure if its intentional or not but now I know everything there is to know about pedestrian travel in the UK…maybe its my subconscious telling me to not get behind the wheel.