Driving Me Crazy

Have you read Driving?? Me?? Crazy!!

Despite understanding and believing my P&C (Potential and Capabilities), I enrolled myself once again in a D-School. A professional D-School this time and that’s Maruti Driving School. Yeah, from the makers of our very own Maruti 800s, Zens, Altos, Esteems, SX4 et al.

No, it was not some divine intervention that led me to this school, but a bit of this and that.
This and that?? Oh…the irritation, the fear, the push, the sudden realization…
The Irritation… at the driver taking leaves and me missing my swimming at the pool for many days. I hate missing my swimming time!
The Fear… ok…this was instilled by a friend… she had an incident to tell… her hubby needed medical assistance in the middle of night and despite 2 cars at home but no person to drive them, she had to take her hubby in an auto-rickshaw (and the harrowing task of finding one!). And after that she learnt driving. And I got sufficiently scared with this. God forbid…but…
The Push… from another friend. She had a similar story… learnt twice…drove around in colony… then abandoned it completely, then learnt again and is now a good and a safe driver!
The Sudden Realization… that, Driving is no big deal, (look who is talking!!) the old as well as the young, all are zipping past in cars on the road and it’s just the ABC and a bit of this and that! I CAN DO IT.

So, with grit and determination I entered The Maruti Driving School. Now, this is a very professionally run institute. They give you a printed day-wise schedule which has 4 Theory Classes, 4 classes on the Simulator and 12 Practical Classes.

I was the star student in Theory classes… taking notes, asking questions and answering them too. Reading the study material at home and using the CD-Rom too!! None of my other batch mates did so! A classic case of ‘Kano main Andha raja’!! (It’s significance you will realize later)

I was an ok-ok student in the Simulator classes. Simulator is not a video game but has a feel like it. The response time needed there is much faster as compared to that needed on the roads, practically. I guess, my 8 year old kid would have done better at it courtesy his proficiency in playing games on PlayStation 2.

And now the Practical Classes…

But before that, let me share that I have mortal fear of traffic. I get a feeling that all the vehicles are gonna bang with me and it is all the more intensified when I am on the Driver’s seat.

Well, the training on the roads as nerve-wracking and amusement rolled into one.

  • Like, when in traffic, I was muttering something under the breath and the Instructor was quick to add, “Don’t use your mouth, use your hands and legs!”
  • At one point of time, I told the Instructor, “I don’t think, I’ll be able to drive, ever”. To this he said, “No, Madam ji, aap se bhi dull log car chala lete hain” (No Madam, even people who are more dull (dumb) than you, drive the car!).

When I told about his above statement to KG and a friend, they both were very exasperated and would have whacked my ‘Sir’, if he was around. But I pacified them saying that he was motivating me! And it actually motivated me!! 😀

  • The big sigh of relief whenever it was time to park the car after the class, sometimes it made me wonder, as to what am I doing here?? And of course, it amused the Instructor.

Under the Instructor’s able guidance, any how, I passed the practical exam and  while the 100% score in the theory exam was courtesy me.

And, it was now time to practice it on our own car. And the people at the D-School clearly instructed, “NO driving with Hubby till you are confident”.
So it was our Driver, who was the accomplice of Madam’s trials and tribulations with the car.

So, religiously every morning, the driver drives the car to a relatively traffic free road and then it’s my journey to take on. Its been more than a fortnight now, and…

  • I feel confident only on traffic free roads. 
  • As soon as I reach a cross road, I know one has to use Clutch and Brake, but I focus only on the brakes and the car stops. And then to get it moving, I know, the clutch has to be released till the biting point and then accelerate. So many vehicles honking from all sides just make me brain dead and I cant get that biting point right and the car never moves and every time, EVERY TIME, I reach a cross road or a round about, I have created a traffic jam. Then, I move out and the driver has to drive it to the safe haven. And let me tell you that all this embarrasses our driver!
  • One day in a fit of confidence and insanity I told KG that I’d take him for a long drive, when I am ready. And I know that he’ll have to wait for a long time for that!
  • Everyday, I practice and practice my weak point of stopping and starting the car on a traffic-free road. And I do it well. But as soon as I reach the traffic area and its time for action, my brain goes on a vacation and you know what happens then.

While my heart head says, I don’t know who amongst the 2 says what, but somebody says that driving is not my cup of tea, but I am still practicing. I don’t know, whether I should give up or keep trying. I mean, if I had that driving gene in me, I should have overcome my fears and be a good driver, if not an expert, by now. Here, I am like a juvenile, driving expertly on EMPTY roads and stopping like a lunatic in the middle of seas of vehicles on the road.

Theoretically I know the ABCs of Driving, but practically, I falter at the C!!

What say you…Should I keep trying and some day, some far far away day, I’d learn or give up with immediate effect??