Friday, August 21, 2009

Look out on the road...

I now have my driver's license! Finally! Yes, I know I'm four years late...but my family didn't think Chris and I needed to be driving when we were 16, and Chris ended up getting his license first. So until now, I haven't really needed to drive. And to be honest, I was scared to drive. Too many people try too many crazy stunts while driving...texting, putting on make-up, flossing (totally serious...I saw someone flossing on the freeway a few weeks ago). And it's not just the other drivers...I wanted to make sure I feel responsible enough for others' lives whenever I get behind the wheel. So now, here I am, four years late but starting to feel a little more confident on the road.

Kind of a funny story, although I didn't think it was too funny at the time...I went last Friday morning to the MVD in Tempe. I felt good and ready for the test, so I wasn't too nervous. I guess I went to the European-style MVD, though. First, the guy who would be with me for the test was Russian. I couldn't understand him when he was telling me where to drive the car for the test, so I kinda had to wing it based on the little bit that I did understand (luckily, I ended up at the right spot). The first thing I had to do for the test was the parallel parking...with the cones on the left side of the car. Of course, I'd only been practicing the normal parallel parking, by backing up and pulling in on the right. If I didn't hit a cone or jump the curb first, then I got three tries to get into the cones and get my wheels on this yellow line that was about 8 inches away from the curb. The first time, my back wheels touched the curb and I was scared I would jump it, so I asked if I could try again. The second time, I got in ok and I think my wheels were on the line (I'm not positive), but I thought the Russian guy had said that once I was in the cones, I had to pull forward once and reverse once, but it turns out that he'd actually said I couldn't adjust at all. Oops. Third and final try. Once again, I got in the cones ok. I looked around, looked up at Vlad to see what he thought...he was just standing there, staring at me, so I asked if I'd gotten it...he shook his head at me and told me to open my door. I was about 6 inches away from the line. I didn't even get on the road. I was completely devastated, but luckily I waited until he was far, far away and my dad and I were back in the car to start bawling my eyes out.

So back to today. Since I've decided to avoid the Tempe MVD at all costs, my dad and I drove out to one in Mesa instead. Compared to how calm I was before the nightmare test last week, I was terrified this morning. But obviously, I passed! Yay!! It was a piece of cake; I got the 3-point turn on the first try, and the worst thing the lady said to me was that I have to stay stopped at stop signs for at least four seconds before I can go. Um, no offense, but who does that? Especially here in'd get run over.

I never thought it would be like this, but I really do feel like I have more freedom. If I want to get with some of my friends, I don't have to coordinate with my family's schedule to make sure I have a ride. I can go to the temple whenever I want to, not just when one of my friends asks if I want to come along. I can drive myself to church go work...

Add another check on my to-do list. :)