I have to admit. I am, by far, the worst driver in America. Everyone who knows me will attest to this fact. Those who have had the misfortune of being a passenger in my car will agree. I can’t drive.
My driving story starts in 2006 when I first got my license. Yes, you aren’t seeing things. I was 27 when I first learned to drive. It wasn’t that I had never tried before. I had tried and failed many times before I finally said enough is enough. I can’t even think about being a mom and not be able to drive.
I marched myself down to the DMV and took the test. I had always been very good with the test portion. Over the years, I had basically memorized the book. I had time on my hands, I wasn’t going anywhere because I couldn’t drive. The first time, I failed. I never even saw that Stop sign. I swear. I think they just popped up after the fact. It’s a conspiracy you see. My parallel parking was extraordinary though, but alas I still failed. The second time, same thing. I didn’t see the stop sign or the red light and I really thought I had clearance when I backed into that spot. Ooops, my bad. Sorry about that head light. Third time on the street test was not the charm, it was then that the test administrator suggested I go to another branch, one that offered a parking lot based test to “simulate” road conditions. He did everything but call me an idiot.
After my allotted wait period was over, I went back again. This time I went to the other DMV and failed because I forgot to come to a complete stop at the Stop sign. Really people, come on. We all slide through a stop sign. I looked both ways before I slid, doesn’t that count for anything. Again, I wait. On my second time at the new DMV, I take the test and fail because I screwed up the parallel parking. Which I had done so well my first time but now, I was nervous. I had become a laughing stock to my friends and family. It had gotten to the point where Vegas had put the odds of my next test being a pass at 500:1.
On the day of the last test, the day I would finally pass. I had the same older gentleman, I had always had. He recognized me right away. Two minutes into the test I had already screwed up 3 times. I knew failure was imminent. When we pulled up in front of the office he handed me the slip and said, you passed. I was floored. He then went on to tell me that he passed me because he was tired of seeing me and hoped that I wouldn’t have to drive too often.
Now before you all say, OMG your poor children. Don’t worry they are protected. Their car seats look like something out of a Transformers movie. They have the top of the line ones that you have to take out a small loan to buy. The ones that form an impenetrable cocoon around you upon impact. We have three of those. The older two, I sit them far in the back of the minivan and tell them, in case of impact grab the “oh, sh*t rail”. In all honesty, they only ever ride with me in an emergency. Which was the whole point of me getting a license in the first place.
Well, I told you that story. To tell you this one. (Now I sound like my Grandfather).
I’ve had numerous mishaps over the years since I got my license. I wrecked a friend’s car the day he moved. In my defense, I told him I couldn’t drive. I ran over a tree in the front yard of my old house. It really was more like a bush but when my husband tells it, it was a small tree. Either way, I can’t back up worth a damn. Same story both times, I misjudged and BAM. Only the first time, it was just a scrap the second time I went into a ditch came up and took out the tree/bush.
Whenever my friends and family gather, they all have a driving mishap story that usually involves me doing something stupid. I get it, I’ve earned it, until now. This week, it wasn’t my fault. Let me shout it from the roof tops. It wasn’t me. Here’s what happened.
I was driving down Route 1 and yes, I will admit I was on the phone. The hubby was on speaker phone and he was checking in. I never text, I swear I don’t. I know my limitations. I can barely walk and make a call, you think I’m going to text and drive. Aaanyway, I’m driving down the road and BAM, this pickup truck totally crosses over into my lane and is barreling towards me. The only thing I can think of to say is WTH. My last words, captured for posterity. After the truck turned away at the last second and I veered into the empty other lane, (which in hindsight I probably should have checked before I veered), I laughed at the thought of yet another spent life and the fact that my last words would have been WTH. Which led me to sing the Avril Lavigne song. I told you, I’m nuts. The hubby, totally oblivious asks why I’m laughing and I tell him what just transpired and his response is to 1. Get off the phone and 2. Pay attention. He also added that the loss of yet another of my nine lives was not funny because now I’m down to 2 and I’m only 34. Oh well, thems the breaks.