We were driving when Mary brought up a topic that's been her favorite now for about a week. She said Livi I don't understand why you won't let me drive if everybody else can drive, if everyone else can learn to drive I can too, right? I said Mary you're too young to drive. You know I said I'll always take you on drives, you don't have to worry about that. Mary, I'll always take care of you. She said yeah I know, but I want to drive too. And I started explaining why it wasn't a good idea, until someone rolled up beside me at the traffic light when I was in the middle of saying "look, you're my best friend, but you have to listen to me on this." The man looked once at me, looked once at the passenger seat, and then quickly took off. Well, you know, even though it's the country, you still get some city drivers.
We were going through the industrial part of town in the north-west to pick up some magazines from a stall L told me was very businessey, and might have a good sized classifieds section. So I went to the stall (which was a roadside stall), pulled up on the near side of the road, and told Mary to be patient while I talk to the man. I got out, closed the door, and went over to the man selling the papers. I said to him, good morning! He said good morning. Mary said good morning. The man looked around. I said I'm right here. He said oh right. I said do you have any business type magazines with classifieds in them? He said oh yes hold on while I get them out for you. At this point Mary started flashing her lights, so I turned around and said Mary seriously calm down, I'm only going to be a minute longer here, yes I know you want to get going, I've already told you we're making this trip to get the magazines, now please wait PATIENTLY while I get the magazines from the man! And then I turned back to the stall. He was facing me now with five magazines, and said to me, who are you talking to? I said Mary. Then I called to Mary, Mary say hi. Mary said hi to the man. I took out my purse. I said here you are, but he was again looking wildly about. I said to him, I'm right here. He said oh right, then quickly took my money and went away. I don't know what he was so busy for, I was the only customer there.
As I was going home, I pulled up at the post box to send off a bill. Someone came walking by on the footpath, and called out to me, Miss! you've left the door open on the road. Mary said oh it's all right, I don't mind. The man looked about like the magazine man, and suddenly took off. I don't know, I don't get people these days, sometimes I think I'm the only sane person alive. But anyhow, we headed home, but Mary again took the conversation in the direction of her driving, saying that she'd order whatever parts she needed so there wouldn't be a cost. I said Mary, no. But she insisted, so I said Mary, you're very clever, friendly, and lovable. But you need to learn there are such things as boundaries. I have told you I'm happy to drive you, but you are not going to drive. And we will not have this conversation again.
Well, that did the trick. She hasn't talked about it all day since, and I'm relieved. She actually seems strangely accepting of it, all of a sudden. It's true, she is a pretty smart girl, but crazy too. I can't imagine her by herself out on the roads. I mean, now I know she has a credit card, so I guess she knows how to use the webs, and that kind of thing is hard enough even for me. The next thing I know she's going to be hacking into websites for the fun of it. Ha ha, oh dear. But I am glad she's accepted she can't drive at least. What a relief.