The Aardvark Speaks : essence, effervescence, obscurity. Established 2002. A weblog by Horst Prillinger. ISSN 1726-5320

October 22, 2004

Predators of the Greek country roads (2)

The Japanese Pickup

Japanese Pickup in Greek landscape
Picture: Two Japanese Pickups quietly grazing at the side of the road.

Previous episode in this series: The Cement Mixer

The Japanese Pickup is slightly less dangerous than the Cement Mixer, as most of the time it merely rolls along at speeds below 20kph, blocking the way of the typical tourist in his small rental car, especially on narrow roads where overtaking is impossible, making them a nuisance rather than a danger.

However, they should not be underestimated: Some Japanese Pickups would obviously like to be Cement Mixers, and in obvious imitation of their larger idols, some of them do unexpectedly appear in narrow curves and behind blind summits. Also, as some areas of Greece like Crete are something like Japanese Pickup Retreats, many very very old pickups — some thirty years old and older — populate the country roads in various states of disrepair. It is vital that you keep a safe distance from these creatures in case they suddenly fall apart.

Some Japanese Pickups have been known to co-operate with Cement Mixers: they will putter along a road at a nervewreckingly low speed, and when the tourist finally attempts to overtake them, a Cement Mixer will appear out of nowhere and attempt to run into the tourist's rental car. So the Japanese Pickup should always be watched with care; they are harmless only when parked at the side of the road as in the picture above.

Posted by Horst on October 22, 2004 11:56 PM to the land of Potz | Tell-a-friend

Josh Cogliati said on October 25, 2004 02:53 AM:

Japanese pickups should not be trusted even if parked, if they are parked on a hill. I have known of one that slipped out of gear after the owner walked away and rolled a hundred yards downhill. Fortunately, a tree bravely stopped it before it hit anyone.

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