parking_lot1Any of us who drive a vehicle know what it is like to find a parking spot at the mall or other public place we go. Have you ever gone to West Edmonton Mall on a Saturday afternoon? NO PARKING!! You know how it is. We all start by driving around the lot looking for a close place to the entrance and after 5 or 10 futile minutes decide that a parking stall anywhere is better than driving around.

Then you have those times when you see someone getting in their car so you wait behind them to take their place only for them to be doing who knows what before they actually back out of the stall. Seriously! I am sure some people take their freaking time just to make those waiting for the spot wait longer. Or do some people get in and check their hair and make-up and who knows what else while full cognizant that someone is waiting for the spot?

Still the biggest mystery to me is why people find it necessary to either back into a stall or drive through the stall to the other side. What is the point. Those that back in tend to take 3 or 4 times longer to park their vehicle holding up traffic in the process and then they are too far over one way or the other or too far back into the stall.

Here is a story of something that happened to me in November. I went grocery shopping at the Yellowknife Co-op, where we usually do. The Parking configuration, like most shopping malls is like the picture below:

ParkingLotMap middle

The parking lot this day was fairly busy and I usually have my favourite area that I like to park. When I arrived spot “A” was open so I pulled in. In spot “B” was a vehicle that had either backed into their spot or pulled straight through from the spot I now occupied. I pulled in as far as I could and was about 6 inches from the rear bumper of the vehicle in “B”. The driver had also either not pulled through far enough or backed in too far as the back end of the vehicle was slightly over the center line into spot “A”. No big deal as I pulled up close and was not hanging out with my back end into the drive lane.

I spent about 45 minutes to an hour inside the store getting the groceries we needed, packing them up, paying and pushing the buggy back out to my Veracruz to load them in. Half way out I pressed the key for the power tailgate and voila, the back opened so I could just start loading when I got to my vehicle.

As I pulled up to the back of my vehicle to start loading I had a guy come up to me and say “It’s about time. I have been waiting for you for 15 minutes” “Excuse me” I said. “I couldn’t load my groceries into my car because you pulled in too close to my back end” was his response. All I could do was look at him with a dumbfounded stare for a few seconds. My response was then “well I guess you shouldn’t have pulled through or backed in”. I then said “you know, you could have gotten in your car and drove it forward 3 or 4 feet instead of waiting”. He shot back “I shouldn’t have to move forward to load my groceries. You should have had the courtesy to leave me enough room or park elsewhere”. All I could do was shake my head why mumbling “Yea right”.

I finished loading my groceries and then deliberately strolled to the cart area to return the buggy before returning to my vehicle, backing up and leaving. Even while I was loading my groceries, the guy stood there waiting for me to move my vehicle instead of getting in his and moving his up slightly.

That incident was 2 months ago and I am still dumbfounded that the guy actually had the nerve to say that to me. I have also taken note at both the Extra Foods and Co-op ever since to note the number of people who back into their stall or pull through the stall.

I have one big question – WHAT IS THE POINT?