When I have to drive my husband’s car or a rental car or any car that’s not my trusted little one, I feel like I’m eighteen again.
I don’t mean young/fit/adventurous eighteen. No, unfortunately not.
I mean scared-to-drive eighteen.
So this is my advice to you who are:
- eighteen (or seventeen) and harbour homicidal impulses towards the inventor of driving tests
- nineteen or any age above, you have been lucky as to pass the driving test but wish that ‘L’ plates came with a protective rubber jacket for the car.
- any age and break into a sweat when they ask you to drive a company car, a rental car or your drunk friend’s car.
For those of you at #1:
During your driving test, when you do something silly (it’s likely to happen) or another motorist does something silly, don’t swear.
Look long, hard and often into all the mirrors (except the one behind your sun visor).
I’ve passed my driving test so you will too.
For those at #2:
The ‘L’ in your L-plate doesn’t stands for ‘Learner’, nor for ‘Lady Driver’.
It’s ‘L’ for ‘Late’: your official authorization to arrive late to school, uni, work, the gym, grandma, etc., and it covers all the other motorists around you (this is why you need one at the front and one at the back). Feel free to drive nice and slow.
For those at #3:
If they give you a car that’s smaller than yours, it’s easy peasy, no problem there.
But I suspect that your car is the smallest you could find with four wheels, so chances are that the car they ask you to drive is bigger. Now, let’s consider what’s the point of big cars?
- To fit a large number of people
- To fit fat people
- To look impressive and majestic
Now, if you’re driving a car that looks majestic, your driving must also be majestic: solemn, measured and…slooooowwwww. Nobody expects a Rolls Royce to be driven sportily. So you can (and should) drive slowly. This will also increase your visibility by pedestrians (who should gawp at your stately machine) and by other motorists (who can then predict your trajectory and get out of the way). Also, any potential collision with human, animal, wall or tree should cause less damage at ‘majestic’ speed.