Baby I Can Drive My Car

It feels like it has been a long week. Although the weekend promises more work squeezed into spare moments and crazy rushing around in the other moments, it’s still nice to have Friday night as a kind of mental full-stop.
Today I drove out to visit my dear friend Anne for lunch and long chats while Amelia destroyed delicate lego set-ups around her house. I felt very bad and could just imagine Anne’s 8 year old son’s frustration upon arriving home to be told that a three year old had pillaged his Viking set-up. Sorry Raff!

The most amazing thing about today was that I drove to Anne’s house. It probably only took me around 25 minutes or so, but for some reason that drive has been a psychological hurdle for me ever since I started learning how to drive. It was probably because I was spending a lot of time with Anne when I first started thinking about driving and how at the age of 29 I still couldn’t do it (that was now a big 4 years ago!) and to get out to her place always felt like something I should be doing with ease, and just wasn’t. I still had a great deal of apprehension this morning, and almost called her to cancel because I felt a little tired, but I didn’t and believe it or not, we got there! And I almost even enjoyed the journey home.

I am telling you this because a few people have written to me over the last couple of years who are, like me, late bloomers when it comes to road-worthiness. I want to tell you that now, after all that driving drama (1, 2, 3 and 4) that went on for so long, I find that I am one of those people who occasionally arrives at a destination and have been so preoccupied by other thoughts I can’t remember how I actually got there… most days I play the radio really loudly and sing along and laugh at dj’s jokes when I used to have to drive in dead silence with absolutely no one talking… I even occasionally think it might be nice just to keep driving because I am playing a good cd and Amelia is asleep in the backseat… I can drive to places I have never driven to before without a practice session… I can sometimes drive somewhere without sussing out where the best parking might be before hand… and I can do naughty things like eat a chocolate bar while I am driving out of the supermarket parking lot. These are all things I would never, ever ever have imagined I would ever be relaxed enough to do. And here I am doing it. I still suprise myself.

There are still things I don’t do – I haven’t really driven at night yet (apart from one scary session with my mum where I mounted the curb as I went around the corner and then almost took our mail box off the fence), I can’t back into a park, I will drive the long way rather than take the freeway, and I have no idea how to parallel park but these things are kind of trivial when the basic fact is I CAN DRIVE and I never thought I would.

If you don’t drive and are looking for the final word – I strongly advise booking a series of professional lessons – it’s so much easier than with someone you know.