I guess it pays to pay attention to hi-way signs. Saturday evening, Ashley & I were returning from E.Texas where we'd gone to visit mom/Grams for her upcoming b'day and after passing a Highway Patrol pulled over on the side of the road and being thankful that for a change, I wasn't speeding - I got pulled over by said Highway Patrolman. Ashley and I had just had a discussion about how even though he didn't pull out after we passed, thankfully, we like to look in the rear view mirrors to see if any other 'law breaking' citizen might be in the process of having that experience. Not 5 minutes later, as I'm talking on my cell phone and no longer paying attention (but still not speeding of course), I see flashing lights in my rearview mirror! Oh crap! was my response. I pull over, completely puzzled as to what I might have done...other than not possibly the lack of attention I was giving the road because I was having a conversation on the phone...maybe this was what I was being pulled over for???
Nope, that wasn't it at all as said Highway Patrolman informed me that I'd been 'driving' in the 'passing' lane and that particular lane, the LEFT hand lane, was to be used for passing only and if I'd been paying attention to the road signs that I was passing, I would have known this! (Law says something like, 'left lane is for passing only and once you've passed a vehicle, you have a certain amount of time to return to the right hand lane or be in violation of said law'.) I had to think this thru because I'm slightly directionally challenged and have a hard time with right and left!!!! I omitted the part that I wouldn't have seen the signs anyway, cuz I was too busy talking on the phone! Officer Jackson then asked me for my insurance certificate and driver's license, which I promptly handed over. Oops...another snafoo on my part...the insurance certificate I'd handed him had been expired since November! Another Oh crap! moment. I quickly told him I was sure I had a current one, which he suggested I locate while he went to run a check on my license. Thankfully, Ashley and I were able to locate it along with several other expired ones in the glove box.
After what seemed like a very long time, he comes back to the truck with his clipboard in hand and kindly informs me that he's only writing me a warning ticket - no penalty no points he repeats several times. 'Kindly' was the key word here - he was very nice and I appreciated him not giving me a real ticket as I definitely don't need anymore of those!!! Moral to this story is...don't talk on the phone while driving (or anything else) because it takes attention from highway signs we should be paying attention to and KNOW THE LAW and replace the insurance certificate in your wallet with the new one when you get it instead of just piling them up in the glovebox!