17 May, 2010

Asshole Parker of the Day

Jonathan Scheele, former EU ambassador to Romania says he cannot accept Romanians' "tendency of doing everything in the last moment - and not always completing what they have to do."

I mention this because the topic of today's photo - handicap access - falls squarely under this concern.  When I first arrived here in 2003, the worst handicap officially acknowledged in Romania was having to watch football sober. Since then, newer constructions (largely foreign owned) have sought to remedy this.  Ikea just outside town has a full row of at least 20 marked handicapped parking spots, among a few other notable examples. But in a rare native effort, BCR Bank on Unirii Blvd has a snazzy new wheelchair ramp. Not bad for about two decades later than the rest of the world.
So where does "not always completing" come in?  Like virtually everything involving legal provision in Romania (such as handicap access), enforcement to deter violations is nowhere to be found. Do I really need to mention that the handicap parking spots at Ikea are the very first ones to fill up in the morning, and with nary a limp visible among any driver or passenger? Ikea also has parking spots marked specifically for pregnant women, and apparently it's fine to park there if you simply have enough of a beer gut to look pregnant. In my country, his car gets towed for this. Here, he calls you stupid for not thinking of taking the spot before him.
But handicap parking spot abuse is as common as dust in this town, and not blogworthy even by my very low standards. No, the slimebag in these photos hits a new low: blocking the wheelchair ramp, of all things. And not just parking across it, but actually driving up  into it!
This goes beyond inconvenience, and straight into safety hazard. Certainly it's illegal, but that and 16 RON will get you a coffee at the local Starbucks.  For clarity: coffee at the local Starbucks costs 16 RON regardless... my point is that if you shout "criminal!" around here, at most someone might reply "Gesundheit." For civic duty to be ignored by this populace is a given. For it to be actively flouted takes a new depth of asshole. Hey, welcome to my town.

1 comment:

  1. Why do you live there though, as it seems you're missing your country ?
    Tried this "in my country we're better" several times and it never worked in my favour.
    Try to D&D or speed over 50 in your country and most likely an officer will be behind your ass within minutes, eventually handcuffing you and offering a free ride in his cruiser.
    I'm sure there's some fun in RO though - beautiful girls per sqm is not that bad.


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