Throwback Thursday #1 – Learning To Drive

Welcome to the first edition of the Throwback Thursday Memory BlogHop where we take on a nostalgic object, event, or memory and blog about it.  This week Maggie chose the topic, “learning to drive.”

How to Participate:
It’s Easy! Write your own post about the subject and share your own memories or experience about the topic by leaving a pingback to this post in the comments.

It could even be a story about a parent or a sibling or someone else who figured prominently. Poems are welcome, too. You can use the photo above in your post and tag it with #TBTMemory or #IRememberWhen to make it easier for others to find.

Or, even easier, if you do not wish to write your own post, feel free to tell your story in the comments below!

Today’s subject: Learning to Drive
Who taught you? Did you take drivers training? What kind of car did you drive? Were you nervous? Did you hit anything? Did you pass your driver’s test the first time? What was the weather like? I will post a pingback to my own story later today. Hope to see you in the comments (beep your horn as you drive by) 😉

I was very anxious to drive way before I was 15. I signed up for the mandatory driver’s education class at school. My mom insisted that I would not be allowed behind the wheel of her car until I completed both the mandatory class at school as well as the after school behind the wheel training. (It was all free back in the dinosaur days.)   Driver’s training class was included as part of a health class.

The in-school class was a piece of cake. I aced it. The behind the wheel part was not so easy. I have no idea what type of car my instructor drove. There were two girls and two boys in the car at the same time. I remember that we girls had to be the last to be picked up and the first to be dropped off just in cast the teacher was a perve. (He was not.)

The teacher was also a coach. To me personally, that meant that he wasn’t a real teacher. (No offense to any coaches out there.) He used the drivers training class as a means to do his errands. He was actually quite calm and kind. His directions were clear and he made sure we understood each step. I was very frightened when it was my turn to drive, but not when the others drove. I had the least experience driving because I was a total newbie. (Thanks to my mom’s edict.)

We took turns driving through my neighborhood and then my city. Left turns scared the crud out of me. I was often the fourth one to drive on each outing, but when we started doing lefts, without a left turn light, I was first. The last thing I wanted to do was to make a left turn when oncoming traffic did not have to stop. I was ready to quit driving forever.

But, I successfully made it. My biggest fear was that I would be the one to get a ticket, or run into something. Happily, no one ever had an accident or incident while we were learning to drive.

By the time we were driving the freeway my instructor was planning a dinner party. We, student drivers, took him to a florist, caterer, dry cleaners, and other party planning places. It seemed less frightening just completing his errands. Maybe that was his plan all along.   

After I earned my certificate, my mom let me drive her car. It was a station wagon, and much larger than the car I learned to drive in. So many memories of driving around.  I developed a new fear. The fear of getting lost. I had no sense of direction then and it is still not wonderful to this day.


35 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday #1 – Learning To Drive

  1. Where were you living at the time, Lauren? I remember the first time I came to Los Angeles and saw the traffic lights on the entrance ramps to the freeway! Yikes! I remember taking a tour and the tour guide telling us other than driving the tour bus she never drove in LA. She hated the traffic and could only drive the set route on her tour. 😳

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    1. The suburbs of Southern California. Traffic on freeways wasn’t terrible at all then. We never went too far on the freeway. We practiced getting on and off the freeway a lot. We were a good hour plus from the real LA traffic.

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    1. My first car was a Ford Falcon Station wagon. It’s former owner was a reckless teen male driver. After he racked up too many tickets, his mom made him sell it. He had souped it up like crazy and if I wanted to race it, I was in the right car.

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