That’s real racin’

Yesterday I drove my friend to his mother’s funeral from Leeds to Hereford. The trip itself should have taken around 3 hours and he was to give one of the opening prayers, so with the funeral beginning at 2:30pm we set off just before 10:00am to give ourselves plenty of time.

With the course successfully plotted into the satnav we set off, expecting to get there nice and early. However, as we travelled down the M6 I was all set to pull of onto the M5 when the satnav disagreed with me. Hmm, Maybe Hereford is a little more Eastern than I though and it knows a shortcut. I Gave it the benefit of the doubt.

Then we passed Coventry. That’s odd, I thought. It wasn’t until I saw a sign for London that said 80 miles, and then glanced at the satnav that also said 80 miles to the destination that I thought ‘hang on, something’s up’.

Insistent that the correct address had been entered we nonetheless pulled into the services to get some petrol and to ‘double check’ the destination. The fact that these services were at Watford Gap should give away the next part of the story.

Sure enough, Hereford was not our destination. In truth, we were quite literally on our way to Wembley. Wembley stadium in fact.

Oh shit.

Quickly entering the correct postcode found we’d been travelling in the exact opposite direction for some time, and our trip was now estimated by the satnav to take a further 2 hours 20 minutes. The funeral was at 2:30pm, it was now 12:40pm.

Ah… this posed a problem. There was a very real chance we going to miss the funeral.

Not bloody likely. What I am about to say does not in anyway constitute a confession as times and speeds may be exaggerated for the purpose of a good story 😉

… that said, I set off with what I considered the first genuine excuse to drive like I often drive, only this time with interest. I had to make up 30 minutes of a 1 hour 50 minute drive. I have never driven so fast, or so aggressively in my life. Again I stress these numbers may be made up so as not to incriminate myself, but with my friend’s family receiving distressing calls about our ETA suggesting we would miss the funeral by some margin I managed to get my car upto and beyond 120mph on the M6, rising to 135mph on the M5 and M50.

Remember my disclaimer about the speeds. This is not a confession.

With the seemingly impossible target of 2:30pm and an initial ETA of 3:00pm we tore up the road the likes of which I’ve never done before. I even got stuck behind a tractor as we approached Hereford.

Suffice to say we arrived at 2:29pm, just enough time to run into the Abbey before the start.

It was dramatic to say the least, but there was no way in hell I was going to be late for Maria’s funeral. Not a chance.

Of course if I’d had the BMW Z3 instead of the Celica T-Sport we wouldn’t have made it. The Z3 won’t do 135mph. Thanks to Toyota for making that all possible!

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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