Forum: Advice / Cars & Driving

I did it! I drove! (karma: 1)
By KeepOnSinginPremium member
On Sat Mar 24, 2012 08:28 PM

Many of you know that I am absolutely terrified of driving...but I did it today! I was coming home this morning for the remainder of the weekend and my dad picked me up and I made a comment about being surprised he had the car he did and he was like yeah since your sister isn't using it I took it because it drives so nicely, wanna drive? I said sure. At first I wasn't gonna drive until we were on the highway, but that changed when we discovered there was really like no traffic. At first it was really scary, especially since I'd never driven over 30mph and I was going about 60mph, and then of course I had to worry about other cars, and trucks being on my left (eek!). At one point I drifted a bit too close to the line on the left and a car honked at me and scared the bejebus out of me but I fixed it and did much better for the remainder. When we reached a point about 20 or so minutes from my school I was like "Yes! I reached Point A!" and my dad laughed at me...and then from then on I said "Yes!" when I reached a new county. After getting off the highway I had to drive through a couple of towns and stuff but that wasn't bad...and I made it home with everything intact and without too many errors. I'm really proud of myself...that was about an hour and a half of driving which is the most I've ever done and now maybe I won't be so scared to drive since I faced two huge fears: driving, and driving on a highway.

7 Replies to I did it! I drove!

re: I did it! I drove!
By schuhplattlerPremium member
On Sat Mar 24, 2012 08:55 PM
Very well done!
Keep your attention on the whole scene (what driving instructors call "the big picture");
respect all hazards;
fear no hazards at all;
and you will be fine.
re: I did it! I drove!
By ChristinePremium member
On Sat Mar 24, 2012 08:58 PM
Congratulations. I'm so proud of you!

Keep On Dancing*
re: I did it! I drove!
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sat Mar 24, 2012 09:06 PM
Bravo to you! Once you have a license (or a learner's permit if you are supervised) you really have to take these progressive steps. Even if you are an experienced driver there are always new situations you must learn. I guess I discovered that 4 years ago when I was in Sedona, AZ en route to the Grand Canyon. Now I've been driving since I was 15 and nine months and officially and fully licensed on the first business day after my 16th birthday, so that is almost 54 years. The Sedona to Flagstaff route is about a curvy as a grand prix course, plus I was in a rental car, not my own. New situation, new strategy. I grew up in a smallish city (pop. 33,000) and I didn't have a car in college. I got my own first car the week after graduation, drove 1000 miles to Washington, DC (that was about 880 miles more than I had ever driven before) and had to become accustomed to big city driving which I had never done before. I also had to learn the territory, so navigation was also crucial. In the days before GPS's maps were my friends and I was very happy the Boy Scouts had taught me the intricacies of map reading. So, I think you are taking the proper approach.

Unless you live in a place like Manhattan, or wish to become a hermit, driving is almost an essential skill. You may get a job, such as I had, where public transportation was not even possible. Since my workplace was on a huge military reservation (Ft. Meade, MD) it was not even possible for a civilian to live within any reasonable walking or biking distance to the place.

There are still aspects of driving I dislike. I don't like rush hour traffic jams, something I seldom encountered in my working career, but now must do from time to time when I go to downtown Washington rehearsals for my symphony orchestra retirement "career." Like you, I still am wary of people coming up on my blind side and I too have had several horn honking incidents (both giving and receiving.) My dad, who was a private pilot, did train me to scan my driving environment, just as a pilot must do when airborne. As much as possible, I scan ahead, rear view, side view, in a regular pattern so I have some idea of what is around me at all times. When I have to change lanes, I like to give myself 30 seconds to see what is coming up on me, particularly to my right, since every car has a right side blind spot. I want to know the spacing between the first car and the car behind HIM so I know how much time I have to change lanes. These are tricks you learn with experience and you will never gain experience by avoiding to drive.

Best wishes for your future driving.

Jon.
re: I did it! I drove!
By KeepOnSinginPremium member
On Mon Mar 26, 2012 09:05 AM
Thanks guys! I've had my permit for years now (I think about 3 1/2), but I've never had the guts to drive much, especially after the accident I was in not long after getting my permit. But if I'm home this summer which it looks like I will be, I plan on getting my license.
re: I did it! I drove!
By Tansey
On Mon Mar 26, 2012 11:55 AM
Congratulations! How long is your learner's permit good for? Here in Massachusetts it's only good for 2 years, and you have to take the written test all over again if you haven't gotten your license within that time.
re: I did it! I drove!
By Hrynmember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Mon Mar 26, 2012 12:15 PM
Just wanted to drop in and say how proud of you I am! I know that we both struggle loads with driving, and that is a huge accomplishment. You should be so proud! Congrats!
re: I did it! I drove!
By KeepOnSinginPremium member
On Mon Mar 26, 2012 12:50 PM
Tansey wrote:

Congratulations! How long is your learner's permit good for? Here in Massachusetts it's only good for 2 years, and you have to take the written test all over again if you haven't gotten your license within that time.


It's good for ages...4 years. I got mine in '08 and it's good through my birthday this year.

Thanks guys!

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