Fontaine à Chambéry

Fontaine à Chambéry

Saturday, May 29, 2010


The French are obsessed with having clean windshields. The one seen in this picture appears spotless to the average American eye, correct? Well, you're WRONG!! It is filthy. I can guarantee that the next time Robin gets in his car to go somewhere, he will immediately turn on the wipers and give a little squirt of wiper fluid. Why, you ask?

Well, like previously mentioned, a windshield must be clean at all times. I try to understand, but fail tremendously. I drive around with bird poop, pollen, bug guts, and god knows what else on my windshield all the time! I can honestly say that a little dirt has never been the cause of the countless incidents I've had while operating a vehicle. Who cares if there are a few flower petals (see the right side of picture) on the windshield? It's not like they are obstructing one's view of the road. Aha! This is where I'm wrong!

The French police can pull over a driver and issue a ticket if the windshield is not clean. Apparently I am the only person in this country who thinks this is strange. Shouldn't the police be worried about more serious things, such as individuals driving under the influence or disobeying the speed limit? I mean, I can understand if the entire car is caked in dirt, but pulling someone over for a few flower petals or a spot of bird excrement seems extreme. I could be wrong, but I think that having an immaculate vehicle relates back to a French individual's sense of outward appearance. In France, it is incredibly important to always look très chic, and I guess this notion applies to cars too. I will probably never completely understand the obsessive compulsive tendencies for keeping a windshield spot free. It seems like a battle to be lost, in my opinion. Finally, I can't help but wonder how many bottles of windshield wiper fluid the average French citizen uses each year. It must be a ton!

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