Wednesday, November 25, 2009

How to pick a driving school? What! You need to go to school to drive?

Up here, we have a monthly little magazine distributed by CAA, which is the Canadian version of AAA. It has various articles and ads about travel, insurance and hotels and such...

One of the articles this month was titled: Teaching Your Teen To Drive.

...and I thought to myself... "teach your teen???"

I have to tell you all that I'm old enough to have been driving since I was eleven years old! Ok. So we lived on a farm in the sticks where a cop went down the road about every six years... but seriously! How did I ever see over the steering wheel?

And.. it was my Dad's pickup truck too! An International Harvestor half ton pickup it was and painted barn red! With three in the tree no less! Manual steering and no power brakes. And, did I mention I was only eleven?

I can't recall how I came to be behind the wheel, but I can still remember my Dad's face... all grins... Cigarette in hand ... Felt fedora at that jaunty angle he always wore... Not explaining to me how to drive his truck, because I thought I already knew... but how to feather the gas between gears so the rev's would stay up and the truck would not lurch.. and how to just hold the steering wheel lightly between my thumb and fore fingers so as not to over steer!

Many miles I drove before I finally turned sixteen and marched into the St Thomas Driver's License office to get my beginners. Ten days later, I had my real license... no graduated crap for us experts! I had my first car that same week and elected to get the $75.00 a year collision insurance. (Insurance wasn't even mandatory back then.)

So when you're grandkids go off to take their Driver's Ed, don't tell them about me out flogging Dad's pickup over the anthills in the back forty. It'll only make them mad and hopefully a little jealous of an old girl who grew up in Canada!


  1. Can you imagine the havoc if the teenagers of today learned like you did? The problem is the sheer numbers of them, but also I think they would look at it like a reality TV show rather than real life and death decisions! Nice post, and I hope you and yours have a really happy non-Thanksgiving up in CA!

  2. Great post! I grew up on a farm and was driving a tractor by the time I was seven, and driving a pickup truck through the hayfields by the time I was 12. But I didn't get my license until I was 23, graduated from college, and had bought my first car...a brand new 1967 VW! My dad was a chauvanist....said no daughter of his was going to drive his car. Kind of ironic, since I'd been driving on the farm to help out for years.

  3. That's too funny Lucy! You are a down home country girl driving that International Harvestor!

    God I hate teaching my daughter how to drive. With all the traffic around it's just not as casual as it used to be. Or as cheap!

  4. I love that you were only 11 years old driving that big ole barn red International Harvester...I can just see your little head barely peeking above the steering wheel. Ah, those were the days!


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