Driving Test Nostalgia (‘Life’s a Journey’ nostalgia Link-Up, week 50)

Welcome to year two of our weekly series of ‘link-up’ Posts which reflect on life’s journey, old memories and family stories (see below for more info).family stories

On the day of my 17th birthday I applied for my Provisional Driving Licence. At least that’s how I remember it. Let’s just say I was eager.

I worked my way through at least two separate driving instructors and 2 driving tests and success still eluded me, much to the entertainment of my unsympathetic sibling.

I can remember returning home after the first attempt to pass my test (there was no ‘theory’ test in those days, of course. … a simple requirement to drive in a straight line, no need to understand the road signs). I collapsed dramatically into my mother’s arms and sobbed like a baby. She took this be an indication that I had not been successful, and comforted me accordingly.

In truth, the driving examination had been a catastrophe. And a trafamily storiesvesty to boot. I had been denied my freedom to prowl the city ‘en voiture’ because of a man’s speech impediment. Yes, people. Injustice of the grossest kind.

The tiny little office where you waited with your driving teacher to be called for your examination had been atmospheric with teenage angst. I was as nervous as the rest, and when my name was finally called, a moustached middle-aged man with a solemn face led me to his car. We stopped some distance across the car park, where he asked me “can you r-r-r-ead the number plate please?” I obliged, courtesy of recently acquired 20/20 vision and my National Health specs. All proceeded well until, at the approach to a busy junction on the main road, my stuttering examiner declared that I should “Turn R-R-R-R- LEFT!”

Anticipating that any word that commences with the letter ‘R’, no matter how long it took to actually get to the important bit, must surely be a turn to the RIGHT. Right?

Wrong. By the time I had negotiated my perfectly-executed RIGHT turn, the examiner was in a tail-spin. This maneouvre had clearly thrown the entire route which he had carefully plotted on his little paper map out of whack (no GPS in the 80s kids), and was frankly doing nothing for his stammer.

I was failed with a capital F. Hence the tears. And the injustice. Damn you, stammer man.

It took me a further two tests to get my licence, and apart from a tiny little speeding ticket in the 1990’s, my record has been blemish free ever since.

Can you remember your driving test? Maybe it was the lessons which caused you anxiety? Share your memories  by joining our weekly Link-up (new theme each week) with your own blog post, or simply by chatting in the comments section. Everyone is welcome for a dose of sweet nostalgia!


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More about the Life’s a Journey weekly memories series.

A selection of other posts from this series:-

FIrst day of school memories family stories

Week 2 – Old School Portrait

family stories best friends

Week 4 – Bestest Friends

family stories teenage crush

Week 5 – Teenage Crushes

family stories grease movie

Week 6 – First Movie Memories

family stories cinderella

Week 9 – Favourite Childhood Books

family stories

Week 19 – Becoming a Parent

family stories

Week 25 – Old Boyfriends

family stories

Week 39 – My home town


6 responses to “Driving Test Nostalgia (‘Life’s a Journey’ nostalgia Link-Up, week 50)

  1. How unfair! I would have been rather pissed off…
    I failed my theory test the first time (yep, had one and had not really studied for it, so serves me right!) but passed my driving test with flying colours! I think my Dad, who took me there, was more nervous than me!! ;)
    Great post. xx

  2. I feel your pain – I was quick off the mark with the Provisional too but Mum & Dad couldn’t stand the stress of sitting in the passenger seat. I had 28 lessons and 2 tests before I made it. I made a right hash of my 2nd test but coped well with being in the wrong lane and sitting behind parked cars that I thought were in the queue for the traffic lights so he passed me. I’d probably fail a theory test these days… :-)

  3. Pingback: ‘Life’s a Journey’ nostalgia – a year in review | SaveEveryStep - family stories past & present·

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