Friday, 21 September 2012

Learning How to Drive


driving, driving lesson, first time driving

When I lived in Hong Kong, there was never a need to consider learning how to drive. Hong Kong is a busy city, a bit like London, where public transport is convenient enough. After moving to England, I was advised to learn how to drive. But I just never saw the need to learn.

'I can take the bus/ train/ cab' *nod vigorously*

Obviously that's been quickly dismissed by everyone as this is England. Unless I live in London, a car is a must. 

Then I found myself saying:

'I don't want to kill someone!'
'I will crash!'
'No way can I park like that/ go around the roundabout!'
'I'm hot headed accidents will happen!'
etc, etc...

So I missed a few potential job opportunities because I didn't have a license, and poor hubby had to take Abby to nursery as I couldn't drive. Still, life moved on.

After many conversations about the benefit of driving (getting kids to places, a girly day out with Abby, for example), we decided to go for the one-step-at-a-time approach. I took the first step last year by getting my Provisional Driving License. That wasn't so difficult, and the license has been sitting in my wallet for a whole year to cool off the idea.

But then the time came where I was told to look for a driving instructor. The power of Social Media helped immensely and I quickly found a few recommendation through Twitter. Step two done. Step three, book the instructor, also not too hard, and thankfully he's a very patient guy! Step four, attend the first driving lesson. I found myself chanting 'Don't think about it! Don't think about it!' on the day until my appointment.

All this while, I took a step at a time, trying not to think any further than finishing off that step. But then the nerves started to build up while driving to a safe and quiet location - a car park full of cars! 

*nervous laughter* 'Are you sure you want me to do this here with all these cars?'
*laughs* 'yes you'll be fine!'

And I was. I almost hit the kerb as I had no idea how much you need to turn the steering wheel to turn the car, and I once stood on the accelerator when I was told to break. But that's it, no jerking, no crashing, no killing (perhaps some of my brain cells but I can live with that), and I even get a praise for having a steady leg on the clutch (mild tingling and weakness in the leg afterwards but well worth it). I survived my first driving lesson, drove around the car park twice, and I enjoyed it! My brain was overloaded with information though and even now one side of my brain is still throbbing, refusing to slow down and rest. I'll be doing a therapeutic shopping tomorrow, it might help *nod*.

So I'll be doing more lessons in the upcoming weeks, and hopefully I'll go all the way and get to book the test (trying to push parking and roundabout thoughts far far away). One step at a time.

Meanwhile, I'll be spending time studying the theory and hazard perception tests, so if you noticed that I've slowed down on my reviews and blogging, my stats are going downhill (it's not affecting me at all *sulks*), it's because I'm adjusting to a new cycle in our life.