It’s time to travel on Tuesday again. Annie is asking us for our first car or driving experience.
When I was fourteen it was legal to get a learner’s permit. And I did. I passed the written test quite nicely, thank you. Too bad I had to get behind a wheel of a car.
My father was rather, ahhhh…expressive in his teaching. Sometimes the expressiveness made me a little nervous. I remember driving his truck on a gravel road one time. He had told me the importance of not “riding the brake” somewhere in my lessons. Well, so I had that on my mind. We were on some hilly roads and I would get the truck up them and then just let it coast down. Apparently my “coasting” was like “roller-coasting.” I got a good lecture from that. Occasionally our lessons would end in me pulling over and refusing to drive anymore.
It was my mother who I was more comfortable with. She was always reserved. Her corrections were quiet and she never stomped on the “pretend passenger brake” or grabbed the door of the car with stress.
We survived from fourteen to fifteen. Driver’s Ed came next. My softball coach was my teacher. He said I thought STOP signs were “Oooze” signs because I would not step on the brake hard enough. I passed Driver’s Ed but with the condition that I take both the written and driving tests when I turned 16. I passed both.
My first accident was in the parking lot of my dad’s grocery store. I hit a customer’s car. Thankfully I was going so slow that nothing was hurt.
My first time driving a stick shift alone was in rush hour traffic—my husband made me drive him to work in our new (only) car and then drive myself home during the height of rush hour. Oh and 15 inches of snow had fallen the day before—the roads were drivable, but it was stressful. But after that I never had a problem and ended up loving our stick shift car.
My first (and only) speeding ticket was just before I turned 35. I cried so hard after I got it—not in front of the officer. I cried because I deserved the tickets and because my “babies” were in the car and I couldn’t believe I had been in such a hurry that I compromised my boys. I try hard to drive sensibly and this just wasn’t something I did.
Oh…for the record I drove my first tractor after 30 when I was working at a horse barn. I got it stuck in a manure pile and had to have my honey get me out of there. How romantic.