There isn't a version of The Twelve Days of Christmas that includes a new big toe or a cast for a broken foot. But, last week, I could've written one.

I was leaving Kroger and returning to my car when a vehicle--a four-door sedan--came FLYING through the parking lot at what seemed like 30 miles per hour.

On the bypass, that's impeding the flow of traffic.

In a busy shopping center parking lot (and even if it's not busy), that's impeding the use of my right foot if I'd taken one more step.

I wasn't the only one who took issue with this particular driver. The fellow about 30 feet from me extended his middle digit, while I uttered a few choice (read: unprintable) words.

Come on, youse guys! It's a PARKING LOT. There WILL BE pedestrians!

So, I looked it up and learned what I thought I'd learn. Whether it's posted or not, 15MPH is the maximum for parking lots.

If you go 30, you're going to run the risk of seriously injuring someone.

As a matter of fact, observing these five rules of parking lot etiquette will make EVERYONE'S shopping experience more pleasant:

1. Drive in the Right Direction

Pretty simple. If there are two lanes, drive on the right side. Also, take note of one-lane parking rows. This is especially important with regards to diagonal sparking spaces.

2. Use Turn Signals

Oh, for the love of God, please do this. I'm a big TURN SIGNAL fanatic, but they may even be more important in a parking lot than on a street.

3. Don't Stalk

You know what I mean. You see someone leaving the store and you follow them to their vehicle and wait. This causes a traffic jam and probably wastes your time, when all is said and done. To be honest, when all is REALLY said and done, this may be the one rule most of us break most often.

4. Park Correctly

That is to say, don't take up more than one space or park so crookedly that it becomes difficult for another driver to pull into a neighboring space.

5. Obey Speed Limits

This is where we began. Remember, if it's not posted, 15 is the speed limit.


Be safe and have a Happy New Year!