What Happened To The Courtesy Wave?

Let’s preface by saying we are so lucky that cars were invented. Imagine having to wake your horse up in the middle of the night for a cheeseburger run?

When cars were first invented in the late 19th century, the roads they traveled on were FAR from the smooth, paved highways we have today. In fact, many early roads were little more than dirt tracks, making for a bumpy and often treacherous journey for drivers and passengers alike. BUT EVEN BACK THEN, I bet they were giving other drivers the COURTESY WAVE

This was the ONE unwritten rule of the road. This SIMPLE gesture, a raising of the hand or a nod of the head, is just a nice way for drivers to acknowledge and thank one another for small acts of courtesy on the road, such as allowing another driver to merge or letting someone pass.

I will admit as someone who doesn’t usually frequent the country roads, I went out to my sister’s last weekend and someone gave me the head nod/smile/hand lift while passing them on a range road and I didn’t raise mine back in time. That will take some getting used to. BUT THE MAIN ROADS IT SHOULD BE KNOWN TO EVERYONE. So WHERE DID THE COURTESY WAVE GO?!!?!?!

Perhaps it is the increasing prevalence of road rage and aggressive driving, or the distraction of smartphones and other devices that has led to the decline of it. People are focusing on the roads more, with there being more traffic and simply just wanting to focus on the road ahead instead of who is behind them.

But whatever the reason, it is a shame to see the courtesy wave fading away. In a world that can often feel chaotic and disconnected, a simple gesture of kindness and acknowledgement on the road can go a long way in making the driving experience just a little bit more pleasant. For me personally, if I don’t get the wave it throws my day off for a couple hours. LOL. This should be a STAPLE IN STUDENT DRIVING LESSONS!!!

So the next time you find yourself behind the wheel, take a moment to look out for opportunities to give a courtesy wave. Whether it’s allowing another driver to merge in front of you or giving a friendly wave to a pedestrian who has stopped to let you pass, a small act of kindness on the road can make a big difference in the overall driving experience. Heck, it doesn’t have to be a full wave. Simply lift one finger, eye contact in the rear view mirror with a smile, ANYTHING.

If I can eat a footlong sub on the road and still give a courtesy wave, you can too.

Thank you. Signed,

A very passionate courtesy waver.

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