Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Manual Labour

I had a funny moment while I was sitting in my driving instructor's car early one morning. I was being instructed on pedestrian crossing protocol. I misnamed a "Pegasus" crossing as a "Unicorn" crossing, which was rather cute of me. But that wasn't the funny moment.

Another learner driver had pulled up behind me and parked on the side of the road. In the rear view mirror I caught a glimpse of someone and made a wry smile - it kind of felt like I'd seen an ex-boyfriend in fortuitous circumstances. But then, when I break it down, my old driving instructor was a bit like a stereotypical bad boyfriend.

First, his company website was totally flashy, but not very user-friendly. Good looking but no substance.

Second, he constantly turned up to appointments late with no excuse or explanation.

Third, he never explained important information to me. He'd basically tell me to "drive" - and then stop me and tell me each time I did something wrong rather than show me how to do something and talk me through it as I practiced.

Fourth, he got into the habit of undermining me and putting me down -the cherry on the cake was when he said I might as well just give up and get a bus pass.

Fifth, he promised he would call and never did. He decided I should just learn automatic because manual was getting me nowhere. He said he'd call about getting a lesson in an automatic. He didn't.

So what does any self -respecting girl do when she's in a destructive relationship? She moves on of course. I cut my losses (hours of stressful driving, hundreds of pounds, months of getting worse at driving) and found someone better. And my current instructor is contrary in every way. I picked him according to his basic, unimpressive website, reasoning that a non-flashy website would mean a better instructor, and I was right.

I remember saying I didn't want to be negative on this blog, but I thought it was worth mentioning mr bad driving man. For a girl who's got as much going for her as I do, I'm often not as forthright as I should be, sometimes to a fault. It's fairly well known: My fiancé's the hawk and I'm the dove.

I did a first aid certificate recently for work and they said I was great, but didn't come off too confidently, even though I should have done. They told me to be louder, which sums it up.

So I was almost distracted by wanting to stare down mr bad driving man in the rear view mirror, but I was interrupted. A drunken guy approached our car and started slurring vexatiously through my open driver's window. He held a pink plastic wine glass like it was a glass of brandy and hugged a bottle of cider in the other arm. Mr good driving instructor warned sternly that he'd call the police, and by the time the drunk had tottered off, the other learner car had moved on.

And so have I. Ha. Look at me now mr bad driving man.

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