Well, after all the excitement of the wedding I’m back to the day to day stuff. I went out for my first lesson in an artic yesterday. I did that one drive up and down a straight road before, but yesterday was the biggy. Forty four foot trailer, dirty great DAF unit. Bloody huge.
He told me to drive it up the big straight road I went to on my assessment, not a problem, do a U-turn at the top, fine and dandy, drive back, easy peasy, take the next left onto the main road, DO WHAT?
And that was my warm up done. One tootle up and down a quiet road, then out into the real world in the best part of sixty foot of truck!
Stunningly, it wasn’t so bad. A lot better than my first two tests in a rigid. That was thirty two hours of driving and I was still rigid with fear. From the offset (he says, deliberately refraining from using that hideous Americanism ‘ from the get-go’. Damn their pervasive media and bastardisation of our language. "This is the language of Shakespear, keats, the bible" to loosely quote Higgins from "My fair lady" -though not, as I recall from the book Pygmalion.)
Meanwhile, back at the Buck-cave, I was talking about my driving. From the offset…, I was quietly competent. As the instructor said, "now you know you could steal an artic. You might clip a few pavements, but you could drive it away." You can tell we are not far from Liverpool!
I had issues with the reversing into a bay exercise, but after I’d done it he explained that they’ve set their course up shorter and narrower than at the test centre, so if you can crack it in their yard you can piss it at the centre. I like the attitude. As the Russian army are reported to say, "Train hard, fight easy."
Right, time is slipping away, it’s time to don my fat suit, crack open a Yorkie bar and slip my Sun newspaper in my bum cleavage. Let’s go to work.
By the way, when I’d finished yesterday and got back into the mighty Micra I burst out laughing. It was like getting into a toy car! Dinky little steering wheel, biddy gear stick, titchy car.
Time to terrify some more car drivers.