Does everyone who drives a car complain about the drivers from an abutting state?

My driving life started in northwest Ohio where it was not unusual to hear “those darn Michiganders” from friends who’d had a close call with another auto.

In my middle years, I relocated to southwest Ohio where the phrase became “people from Indiana don’t know how to drive.”

This past weekend, I flew to Albany, New York, secured a rental car to spend my weekend in Manchester, Vermont.

Returning Sunday, I adhered to the speed limit on the mostly two-lane winding rural road back to Albany. Occasionally the road widened to allow slower traffic to cling to the right lane so faster traffic could pass, usually as if the passee were standing still.

The few cars that I had passed displayed Vermont plates. The ones flying past me had New York plates. I wondered if the difference was a comparison of way of life. The seemingly slower less stressed life in Vermont compared to the fleeting New York minute.

Less than five minutes after I crossed the southern Vermont boundary into New York, a pick-up truck trailer combo (an outfit I’ve seen roofers drive) was stopped on a side road that ended at the route I was trekking.

No observable traffic ahead of me because of the curves of the road. In the review mirror, only empty road.

Then, alone in the car, I said out loud, “Oh, no!” when the vehicle pulled out in front of me. I had to brake to avoid rear-ending the tandem unit.

Identifying the state represented by the license plate was easy. I laughed and knew I had to share with someone. My youngest brother in Toledo answered his cell.

I explained that I had just crossed from Vermont to New York and that a tandem work-truck had pulled out in front of me. I was rewarded by hearty laughter when I asked, “Did I really have to travel this far to be cut-off by a driver from Michigan?”

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