Being Driven to Distraction…
Last night I had my, umm… sixth driving lesson? Something like that.
I make the odd cock-up, but generally it’s all going well. I don’t really have any problems just driving around the streets, and can now do a three point turn and stuff.
I still have to try all the reversing and parking malarkey, but I just keep reminding myself that little shitty snot-nosed 17 year olds learn this shit, so it CAN’T be hard!
I don’t have a fear of the car, or of going over 10mph like most learners do. I’m still well on track for the exam – which is good because I’ve bought a package of 22 lessons plus theory and practical tests for £550. If I don’t use all the lessons then they’ll even refund their cost!
Brian The Instructor is cool and we’re getting on well, and more importantly we’re working well together! I think he appreciates my laid-back attitude and sense of humour because it’s close to his own.
One thing I have noticed is that I’m starting to sympathise a bit with car drivers now.
You often hear people say how car drivers should be made to ride a bike so that they appreciate the awareness and skill it takes, and it will benefit their driving greatly. Well, as a biker moving to cars I have to say that the opposite is also true: that every biker should be made to drive a car.
There are a lot of situations where on a bike normally I’d be ranting at the idiotic car driver, but now I’ve been on the other side I can sympathise and understand that idiotic car driver. Not that this knowledge will stop me ranting at them next time it happens when I’m on the bike, but at least I understand a bit more now.
The overall impression I’m getting is that driving a car is designed to take your attention off your surroundings and off the act of driving safely.
On the bike I’m ALWAYS aware of my riding, the roads, surrounding traffic… just about everything from birds flying past to the sound of my engine.
In a car I feel like I’m sat in a big lump of heavy metal that’s tenuously controlled by me. It doesn’t lend itself to concentrating.
I think of the lessons as a bit of a chore rather than anything I look forward to. When I’m actually driving it’s ok, but I just can’t get excited about it all. To me it’s a necessary evil that will allow me to carry lots of shit, take my girlfriend away places, and stop me getting killed on the snow and ice during Winter.
I’m driving now – but I’m still 100% a biker…