KELLY BROWN: In a traffic jam? Time for everyone to grab a mobile to raise the alert

BEING stuck in traffic is frustrating, but it does give a real window into modern life.

I was recently caught up in the tailbacks of a bad accident, which resulted in my being stationary for the best part of two hours.

Now, while no-one likes to be stuck in traffic, it was amazing to watch how the modern driver reacts – and the phases people go through.

Phase one – information.

Everyone was reaching for their mobile phone, calling in to work, calling friends, texting, doing whatever it is they needed to do to raise the alert.

In every car around me, everyone was on their mobile phone – either calling, texting, tweeting, Facebooking or looking on the internet.

Then of course there is the fiddling with the radio to try to tune in to a station which has updates on when you will get moving again.

Phase two – frustration.

Now this is the phase where you start to see drivers get out of their cars to look at the traffic (just in case the view outside the car is amazingly better).

When, realising the only conclusion is ‘yes, there is traffic’, you see the (mostly male) drivers get back into their cars and shake their heads in frustration.

It is almost as though they feel they should have the powers of Moses to be able to part the cars in front.

Phase three – boredom.

The realisation there is nothing you can do so you just have to sit there while the (brilliant) emergency services do their bit to help whichever poor souls are involved.

My answer was to eat. In fact, by 9am, I think I had eaten most of my lunch while huddled under the blanket which I keep in the car for the children.

Phase four – so what happened?

When the traffic finally gets moving, this is the time when all drivers have a peek at the scene, and then when they get to their destination time sharing their tale of traffic hell, and find out what happened.

I was only grateful for two things when I (finally) got to work: that I was not involved in the accident – and my kids were not in the car in the queues!

Tears: I’m not alone!

I HAVE been delighted to be reassured I am most definitely not the only idiot to cry at films.

A ‘favourite’ to shed a tear to seems to be the Disney film Up, which I can also confirm from my own pathetic viewing. But the one everyone appears to be crying at now is Les Misérables.

And having now seen it I can confirm a few tears were shed from me – but not as many as there were from others sobbing in the cinema. Be warned!