Failing The Driving Theory Test…

Failing The Driving Theory Test…

… is what I didn’t do!

I got 49 out of 50 for the questions, 66 out of 75 for hazard awareness video test, and a new Chicken Temptation footlong from Subway.

A pass is 43, 44 and a 6” Sub Of The Day respectively.

I held off on saying it was a piece of piss until I read the letter properly – after the test I just read the first word, so I’m glad it didn’t say “Congratualtions you’ve failed!”!

After riding on the roads for 10 years, I should bloody well think I passed, too!  I’m very mildly pleased, but to put that into perspective I was much more chuffed with the Chicken Temptation Sub.  Now if I pass the Practical test first time, THEN I’ll be pleased with myself…

OK, for you ‘Merkins who apparently have to be able to open the car door and switch it on to pass, I believe the British test is the toughest in the world.

The Theory Test consists of 50 multiple choice questions about The Highway Code and Road Signs, plus lots of Common Sense and a bit of First Aid thrown in.

The Hazard Perception test is tougher.  You have to sit through a video as if you’re driving a car, and click when you see any hazard which may make you change your speed or take other avoiding actions.  Basically you need to practise where they want you to click.

It’s much the same as the GCSE exams at school – you learn to pass the test rather than how to live in The Real World.

I did find an excellent site to practise, though:

Pass the link on to anyone in need.  You pay a few quid and get access to all the test questions, mock exams, and hazard videos and stuff.  Awesome site.

It also has a couple of free tests so feel free to have a go, if you want to see what we have to go through.

So that’s it!  Almost there, and now I’ll put in for my Practical Test, as there’ll be around a 7 week wait.

The penny seems to have dropped with my driving, despite only having had 7 or 8 lessons.  Normal driving seems pretty natural to me now, and I’m confident of controlling the car rather than being a pansy.

On the last lesson I tried reversing around a corner and parallel parking for the first times with no problems – just a bit more practise needed and it should be fine… then I just have to learn bay parking and do an emergency stop (they call it something gayer these days).

Meanwhile, the monstrous Fiat Uno sits waiting to terrorise the streets with a Nasty Evil Ninja at the reins…


Second Strike, Still Deadly…

Second Strike, Still Deadly…

Err, or I could have titled this “Second Lesson, Still A Bit Shit”, but I didn’t, so there!

Last night was my second ever driving lesson.  I knew I was cocking up with my crossed-up go-kart steering technique, and so would have to work on the crappy ‘feeding the wheel’ through stuff.

I was considering buying one of those steering wheel jobbies for my Xbox to get some practise in on Forza II… As I didn’t, over the weekend I even thought about picking up a frisbee, or a dinner plate, or a small round dog just to have a go at practising.  Instead I had a few drinks and may have touched some titty.

The time came, and Brian (the instructor) drove me to the small quiet circuit I’d used last time, demonstrating the steering technique on the way.  As it happens, touching some titty was the way to go, as when I took over, whilst not perfect, I was doing it just fine!

Not only that, but instead of doing a few left-turn-only circuits of the route like I was expecting, I started straight off going around so I was doing all right turns at the junctions, and after doing that twice we headed off down some dual carriageway to drive around the ‘scenic’ town of Redditch.

This was amazing to me, but I was doing ok.  Once I hit the accelerator instead of the brake, but caught it quickly with no disaster…

I’m still not properly doing all the observations that I should, but I think that’s what I’ll be working on in the next lesson.

I actually drove the car all the way back home – which I never expected to be doing for a lonnnnng time, as I live on an awkward road and would rather not trash all my neighbours shoddily parked cars.  For the next lesson I’ll be jumping straight in the drivers seat and driving right from the start.

Still a long way to go, and the slow speed manoeuvres may well still kill me, but I seem to have made a huge jump, and can feel there will be others.

It’s good to have an instructor who will push me to do more than I would if it was my choice, but I guess that’s just confidence.

We’re getting there, and I still haven’t killed any kittens, small children, or Gypsies.