Thursday, 14 October 2010

Why I think Extraordinary Licences are a load of shit

This morning on Facebook our local breakfast radio team said this in their status
A Busso court has granted a temp licence to a driver caught doing 110 ks over the limit in a 5ok area at Margaret River. What do you think?
Usually I try not to get involved with things like this on facebook with the general public because I often find it hard to not to argue with people especially when I find what they are saying is stupid, and unfortunately arguing with the GP isn't a great idea when you have to work with them every day. Today however I though 'what the hell' and I gave my opinion. It got me thinking though so I am now going to elaborate on what I said on that facebook thread. P.s. I didn't start any fights ;)

Here is a link to that thread if you want to see it.

First up, let me explain what an E licence is for those of you who don't know. An extraordinary licence (E Licence) is a licence granted at the discretion of the court. It allows someone who has been disqualified from driving by a court, to drive in certain specified circumstances. It does not apply to people who have lost their licence by accumulating demerit points, those people can apply for 'Double or Nothing' which means that they can elect to be on a good behaviour period for 12 months instead of losing their licence but if they commit a driving offence during that period they lose their licence for double the original disqualification period. Get it? Follow those links for clarification.

Now I only found out about this "Double or Nothing" thing about 5 minutes ago when I was looking up E licences to write this post and haven't really had enough time to have a good think about it in my head but I think I like that idea. I think that is a plan that would actually work. Get too many demerits and get a 3 month driving suspension, opt for Double or Nothing instead and if you fuck up in the next 12 months you lose your licence for 6 months and you cant apply for an E licence. Brilliant!

E Licences however are still available for people who lose their licence all once. Like for drink driving or something like that and I think that is ridiculous. The double or nothing system forces drivers either off the road or to drive good for 12 months, hopefully the good driving will sink in and they'll stick with it. Handing out E licences to people is basically like saying 'hey you really fucked up but don't worry, you can apply for this licence so you can get to work, so having no licence won't put you out too much". What? Really? where is the punishment in that? Boo hoo for them, if they need a licence to get to work, maybe they should have though about that before sinking a 6 pack of beer then driving? They can catch a taxi, a bus, carpool to get to work if they need to. Having no licence will make them lose their job? Well sorry that's just too bad in my opinion. We all know the laws and we are all meant to have some level of common sense. Don't break the law and you won't have to deal with the consequences.

Some people argue back "but Carrie, what if it was a one time thing and they are really sorry and they'll lose their job! That could ruin their family life!" to that I say, if you are responsible for your families income, if you losing your job will result in your family suffering, then how dare you take that risk! Maybe instead of giving out E licences they should offer classes in how to grow the fuck up and take some responsibility for your actions. Secondly, ok so it may have been their first offence, but what if the result of that offence damaged your car? Killed you? Killed your kid? Your parent? Sibling? What if they killed their own family through completely their own reckless actions?

Me, I think our whole licensing system is flawed. Though it's getting slightly better by making kids stay on their L's longer and do more driving hours but how easy are those hours to forge? Driving tests are a simple drive around, park here, go around this roundabout, stop at this stop sign. But are kids taught how to break properly in an emergency? On different road surfaces? How to correct their car if they lose control? It's a joke that we aren't made to learn these extra skills that can save our lives and the lives of other road users. Oh and once we have our licence that's basically it, no re-testing our whole lives. So despite the fact that road rules can change and indeed the way roads are designed in general have changed over time there is no making sure that older drivers still know what they are doing. The amount of times I have seen older people, and I'm talking 40+ not just Nannas and Pops, changing lanes mid roundabout, indicating incorrectly and just display horrendous driving skills is ridiculous. I bet by the time I'm in my 40's the rules and roads will have changed more and more, will by good driving habits now still be good in 30 years time? Doubtful!

What do you think? Do you think E licences are stupid or are they necessary? What is your opinion on Double or Nothing? Do you have a personal experience from losing your licence or a loved one due to bad driving? What do you think about our driver training? Leave it in the comments people I'd love to hear what you have to say!

Love Carrie xoxo xxxx

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Let's see some wildlife!

This post is dedicated to Steven MCG who never got to see a goanna or big lizard while he was here in Australia and to Kianna who was surprised when I mentioned on Twitter that there would be Kangaroos outside when I finished uni.

Her exact replies were

what!? Kangaroos? Just hoping along the streets? Like lost kittens? Wot da fawk

and then

that's crazy! Arnt they like HUGE? Don't they eat small children?!?!

to which I assured her that they do not. ;)

So Monday it was a pretty warm day and I have uni in the evening and when it's warm it generally means that there will be kangaroos hanging out on the grass outside our building when we finish class. There were only three that night but one of them had a little joey in her pouch! She is the kangaroo on the left in the top photo. I couldn't get a closer one of her because she hopped away as we got closer. The other two just kinda stared at us as kangaroos do then slowly hopped away as we walked by too.

Just to clarify though, my uni campus has a bit of bush around it where kangaroos live. Kangaroos do not just go bounding through the Australian streets. Although whe I was younger a kangaroo did come bounding down my street but that was because it was being chased by a dog and it ran into the bush next to my house. (the dog gave up thankfully, mean dog).

This adorable blue tounge lizard was at Mum and Dad's house on AFL Grand Final #2 day. He just wandered up next to the bar fridge while we were watching the game (outside by the way). SO I went inside and got him a little dish of water and he drank from it and it was so awesome! I love lizards. Then he stuck his head up and gave us all a once over as if to say

what are you doing giving me water? That's nice, I didn't know humans were nice

After a little drink he went on his way and wandered off around our table and down the driveway and probably into our garden.

When Ash came home she told us that we should have given him strawberries because apparently blue tounge lizards love strawberries so next time that is what we shall do! It is getting warmer here which means that we'll probably be seeing a lot more blue tounges around the place and I am pretty sure when I was dropping Bayley off to his Mum the other day that I was a snake on the road and almost ran over it! Doh!

Oh and when we went on our staff party the other day there were dolphins playing near the boat. Lots of them! I didn't get a picture though.

Then finally, this morning Bayley and I went for a walk and saw some ducks and then in the marsh near our house we saw some big white stalk type birds. They kind of looked like an Ibis but I'm pretty sure it had a yellow beak so maybe it was an Egret maybe I will go have a better look later on and figure out what it really is!

So that pretty much sums up all the wildlife I have seen about the place lately! Well, other than all the birds I usually see around the place. As I mentioned earlier the weather is starting to get really nice here so Stevo and I will probably start heading out and doing some fishing soon, teach little Bayley how to fish! Oh and maybe go crabbing, another thing that I didn't end up taking Steven MCG out for! You have to come back Steven!

Have you seen any cool wildlife around the place lately? Have any Australiana related questions that you want me to answer? Hit me up in the comments people!!

Love Carrie xoxo xxxx

Monday, 4 October 2010

So I've decided I love my new job

Working at a cafe is a lot different to working in a restaurant or brewery and I wasn't sure if I was liking it all that much. I love the hours, I love the other staff but not so sure I loved the job. Then, on Friday afternoon I got to walk over to The Prince and get some band posters, then glue them to our poster wall with Kiddie Glue!!

Glue them!! Not blu tack, GLUE! Its was pretty much the most fun I have ever had whilst at work, and a lady even came up to me whilst I was doing and said "some people get to have all the fun!" and I was like " I know!! Isn't this awesome!!"

So now I love working there. Yes, just because I got to glue stuff on a wall. That's how I roll ;)

Love Caz xoxo xxxx