I did take those 6 driving lessons, I wanted to learn to drive, something we all did after our 17th birthdays and a skill for life. I remember my first lesson well, the instructor was an older man who watched me run across the road from my house, I got in the car then he blasted me with "what have you got on your feet!!" I had my usual high heels, I was never out of them in those days unless I was at the track! I offered to
We finally got away after he showed me where everything was in the car, A, B, C - accelerator, brake, clutch is how I first remembered which pedals were which. The whole family was there watching me, they were hoping I would kangeroo up the road, sorry I couldn't oblige, I was determined to glide away smoothly - like Ginger Rogers - I managed later to reverse in high heels just like she did!
After my 6 lessons, I decided he was not the instructor for me, he was gruff and always seemed in a bad mood, but then his nerves must have been shot driving learners around all day and into the evenings!
I left the lessons for a while after that, I lived and worked in central London and used the buses & tubes plus the odd taxi when we all crammed in to make it cost effective. I was never going to able to afford to buy a car with all the costs involved and where would I park it, where I lived the parking had either parking meters or parking permits. So that was that for a while.
My next instructor was a woman, whose style was to slap your hand if you were doing something wrong, this shocked me the first time as I had no idea it was coming! After a few slaps, I decided to terminate our agreement as I was in danger of slapping her back. I do wonder if anyone ever did, unacceptable behaviour, if she had done that to my child, assault comes to mind!
By then I had met Mr J who said he would teach me and he did, he was calm and patient with this now 20 year old who still wore her high heels, although not for driving now as driving scuffed and ruined her leather heels! I drove wherever we went, I had now moved down to the south coast with him where the roads were wider and I felt at ease with driving in such beautiful surroundings and countryside.
The day came for my test, my friend had been pestering me for weeks about the date, I didn't want to give myself anymore stress so didn't tell her. It took her 7 times to pass and I really thought I was in for the long haul! I drove us in Mr J's Alfa Romeo to the test centre and waited nervously. The test began and as soon as I had done the mirror, signal, manovere, all was clear, I started to gingerly edge out into the empty road when a car came from no-where & sped past, I asked the instructor if I should just get out now as I was sure I had already failed.
An hour later, I was back at the test centre, Mr J no-where to be seen, I drove the car around the nearby streets (only he had a mobile in those days for business). When I finally found him in a nearby cafe he said he knew I would pass so he didn't wait!
The next morning I was off in the car up the M23 to visit my mum at home in London. It was a planned visit, I could have taken the train but I had a driving licence now! It was my first time on the motorway and quite a daunting ride especially with no map. All went well until the car went dark, what was it, a huge lorry had come up behind me fast, it was a tense ride but once I hit central London I knew my way and my driving duck had been broken!
A few months later Mr J bought me my first car, a pale blue VW Beetle, I loved that car, it was old but ran like a dream and it was mine. I was so sad to part with it when I had my first child, I wonder where she is now, hopefully someone has restored her, we're both vintage now!
I'm linking this post up with The Olivers Madhouse and Magic Moments.