driver’s license saga

It’s been almost a year since my fourth road test. I know… this post is extremely late! I had to cool down first and live my life the way it should be (click related article -> submarine ). 😉

Anyhow…  People who know me think that I’m the kind of person to pass an exam on the first try; how the hell did I end up taking the road test four  (4) times? Here’s a brief rundown:
(Note: To pass the road test, you are only allowed to incur 9 point deduction.)

road test preparation:

driving 6+6 seat belt note to self (driving!)

1st road test:
At a T intersection with two left-turn lanes, I made a left-hand turn from the second left-turn lane into the first left-turn lane…. the wrong lane. Fail!
(Click here to read the blog entry -> road test.)

photo courtesy of jellybean

photo courtesy of jellybean

2nd road test:
The stages of the test were already covered and all that was left was to drive back to the examination office; I looked left to make sure my lane was clear then made my right turn. Halfway through my turn, a car zoomed in from out of nowhere and nearly hit the car that I was driving! Fail! (No blog entry. Too upset to write.)

photo courtesy of jellybean

3rd road test:
On our way back to the examination office, I was about to make a left turn when the examiner stopped me. The oncoming car was three (3) car lengths away, he emphasized that the distance should be half a block or five (5) car lengths away.  Fail! (No blog entry. Too busy crying like a baby. :p)

photo courtesy of jellybean
photo courtesy of jellybean

photo courtesy of jellybean

4th road test: BOOM! I finally made it! 😀
(Click here to read the blog entry, take 4!)

How did I fare in winter driving? Check out my next post… :p

P.S. (jibber jabber mode :p )
On the 2nd and 3rd road test, I was pretty sure that I nailed all the important stages but something happened on the way back which unfortunately led to failure. It sucks big time! Like Neil (my driving instructor) said, it just happened to be my unlucky day. -_-

(Note: Parallel parking was the most feared stage of the test and I passed that with flying colors in all the four tests! That kinda boosted my self esteem. Thank goodness Neil taught me a technique which made it easy breezy! ;))

take 4!

After my third failed attempt (yes! three times!) to get my driver’s license, I was beginning to think that driving was not for me… it was wearing my “Never say never” attitude thin. I was planning not to take another test IF I will fail the fourth one.

The fact that I can’t practice alone made it frustrating. It’s either I book driving lessons ($65 to $70 per hour!) or drag someone with a Class 5 (professional driver of some sort :p) license to accompany me. Well, I did both but more with a driving instructor. You betcha! Driving made my pocket bleed!

Anyway, when I finally gotten the nerve to take the road test again for the fourth time, I made sure that I was emotionally and mentally ready. Nonetheless, the anxiety still caught up to me; I had an upset tummy for the whole straight week before the test.

upset tummy

In my fourth test, I felt that I had a clearer concept of the rules of the road and road signs; it certainly helped me handle road scenarios during the test. After nervously waiting for the result, the examiner drew a smiley on my form and told me that I got a perfect score! Whoa! I was so elated! My driving instructor who accompanied me during the test ended up driving me home because I could not stop shaking. :p

road signs

rules of the road

BOOM! 😀

Big thanks to Warren, Kuya Derek, and Sharon for their time and guidance.

Most of all, my heartfelt thanks to the following folks who patiently accompanied and helped me improve my driving skills:

with Neil Dahl

with Jason Collins

Emil & Grace (for her moral support)

I truly appreciate your help. Thank you so much! 😀

Sooo… how the hell did I end up taking four (4!) road tests? I’ll tell you on my next post. Ta ta for now! 🙂

submarine

I’m back…  (…again)! 🙂

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Before I get carried away blabbering about why I disappeared, I would like to thank Jellybean and Sothi for the enlightenment about the transformation of thecuriousme’s logo. Most of all, my heartfelt gratitude to Chihhang for helping J and @TheSoulfulVixen tweak the new look of the logo (click here to read the blog entry,”renovation”). Maraming salamat (Thank you very much)! 😀
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Sooo… I had gone on hiatus for a couple of months (right… almost a year!!!)… Kinda like a submarine… You know… submarines float and then dive under the water… then resurface… then disappear again… -_-

Let’s just say, I was trying to live my life to the fullest and not waste time hiding in my cave. Yeah… I used to lock up in my nerd cave, living in a virtual world. I’ve realized that there’s more to life outside the four corners of my rock shelter! Life is indeed colorful and too short.

Expect to see fascinating new blog entries soon! 😉 FYI. Posts will be in no particular order.

To give you a birds eye view on some of the upcoming posts, here are some photos:

driving

skating

snowboarding

camping

Olympic Village

Ottawa

Montreal

Virginia

Washington DC

New York

Are you ready? *blink* *blink* 😉

road test

Driving is something that I’ve never dreamed of doing. I must have developed a little phobia because my mother died in a car accident. One more thing, I prefer to be the passenger because I love to take a snooze while travelling. I understand it’s not an ideal habit but what the heck.

Anyhow, moving to this other side of the world made me realize that driving is a necessity. Thus, I forced myself to get out from my cocoon and give it a shot.

 

After I’ve passed the driving exam, I was given minimum of nine (9) months to take the required lessons (in class and actual) and polish my driving skills accompanied by someone who has a Class 5 license (equivalent to Professional Driver’s License). Afterwhich, I will be qualified to take the road test.

(Note: Passing the road test is the “ticket” to driving alone freely.)


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Click the links below to read the driving related articles:
driving                   6+6                   seat belt                            note to self
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Anyway, after several weeks of preparation, I finally took my first road test.
And I failed.

Below are the road signs that I will never forget in my entire life (hell yeah!):

At the back of my mind, I was already expecting it when I  the tester kept writing on the paper while I was doing my road test. I was sad but it did not dampen my spirit. I booked again for my second road test. Life must go on. Ha!

What matters most is, I mustered the courage to learn driving, actually take the road test and most of all overcome my phobia. Aja!


Until my next road test. 😉

long weekend

August.
It’s the first day of the month and the last day of the long weekend. At first, I thought it would be boring and uneventful but I was wrong! Ha!

The following were the major activities that kept me busy within that three days:
Movie Time
I watched The HangOver II and The Social Network. I’ve been planning to watch these movies for the longest time but it’s either I was too busy or too lazy. I’m glad I was able to do it this weekend.  If you haven’t watched it, I highly recommend that you check it out. I had a blast watching the two movies.

HangOver Part II

The Hangover II is a good stress reliever and The Social Network is a very informative movie. It tackled the origin of Facebook and the hurdles that the founders went through.

the social network

Driving Practice
I was able to practice driving for three consecutive days! Thanks to Kuya Derek, my cousin’s husband, for patiently accompanying me and for giving me pointers in order to polish my driving skill.  And also, I’m truly grateful to my cousin Lorna for scheduling the driving practice.

the car

My driving was a bit rusty last Saturday because of the few days that I did not drive. Nonetheless, I was able to catch up with the aid of the helpful tips that Kuya Derek shared. I have a long way to go and I’m doing my best to take it one practice at a time so as to not stress myself.

The good news is…  I made a great improvement on the following:

  • control of the steering wheel
  • backing up
  • parallel parking
  • road merging
  • left and right turn
  • understanding the rules of the road

It’s a great relief because I can now calm myself and not be too intimidated with the other  vehicles.

Packing & Household Chores
Packing my stuff and doing household chores were the clincher of the long weekend. I’m moving my things to my new dig by the end of this month.

That ends my fruitful long weekend.  

6+6

My driving class culminated last week and I’m greatly relieved that it’s off my bucket list. Finally, I was able to put into practice the basics, tips and tricks of driving that I’ve learned from the handbook and from the in-class. I’m praying that I can practice everyday before winter.

newbie driver

Here’s a brief  outline of my driving blunders:
1st Hour

  • Mood:  nervous breakdown!
  • When I was required to slow down, I stepped on the gas pedal instead of the break.
  •  Turtle like speed.

2nd Hour

  • Mood: antsy
  • Incorrect steering! Should do hand over hand.
  • The steering wheel was “out of control” whenever I do the right and left turn so I always end up in the wrong lane. Hazardous!
  •  The driving instructor was going nuts because of my repeated lapses.

3rd Hour

  • Mood: slightly jittery
  •  Going to the rightmost lane when doing a left turn as if I will do a right turn. Ha!
  •  Doing a left turn too late or too quick.
  •  Flipping the left and right turn signal like Christmas lights.
  •  Turtle like speed.
  •  Driving for 30 minutes without a seat belt! Darn!
  •  Breaking while turning on a curve. Bad habit!

4th Hour

  • No longer tense.
  • Mood: bothered
  • Not doing the shoulder check during a right turn and changing lanes
  •  Slowing down on a stop sign.
  • Doing a full stop on a yield sign.(It should be the other way around.)
  •  Speeding in a residential area.
  • Turtle like speed in a main street. (It should be the other way around.)

5th Hour

  • No longer tense.
  • Mood: enthusiastic
  • Breaking while turning on a curve
  •  Forgot to put on a seat belt again
  • Finally hearing a  “Good Job!” remark  from the driving instructor whenever:

**** I’ve managed to do a correct left and right turn
**** Stopping and slowing down on the correct signs

6th Hour

  • No longer tense.
  • Mood: tickled pink
  • I remembered to put on my seatbelt. 😀
  • Doing the correct left and right turn more often
  • Still overwhelmed when driving in a busy street. It scares the hell out of me whenever I see cars all around me. LOL
  • Can now speed up to 50-60 km. A great jump from 20 ey? 😀

What’s next after the 6 hours in class and 6 hours actual driving course?  Practice to the maximum level! I need to take a road test in a few months time to “upgrade” my driver’s license.

Below are the things for me to improve before the road test:

  • Be alert on spotting traffic signs
  • Follow religiously the rules of road
  • Consistent correct steering
  • Proper left and right turn
  • Practice mirror and shoulder check
  • Driving in downtown
  • Driving in the freeway
  • Maneuvering in circle drive
  • Rough road driving
  • Reversing
  • All types of parking techniques
  • Most importantly, grace under pressure must prevail. 😉

Whew! I have a long way to go! I wish I can have SUV as my first car. However, it will still be a dream… for now.. Ha! Aja!

seat belt!

I knocked off from work few minutes early for the required actual driving lesson. It’s a must to take the 6-hour in-class and 6-hour actual driving. I already finished the in-class and I was on my third hour for the actual driving lesson.

My driving instructor (DI) picked me up in the office and then he drove to  a quiet area. My nervousness during the first two hours shifted to eagerness.  Soon, when I was behind the wheel, I did the following necessary routine:

  • adjust the seat
  • adjust the three mirrors
  • took a deep breathe

With the DI on the passenger seat, I zoom away like a bird with the speed of a turtle.  The DI kept bugging me to speed up especially on the main road and the busy area. And when I speed up in the residential area, he asked me to slow down. Such an oxymoron!

For half an hour, I was driving like an excited little teeny weeny pumpkin. Then when I was about to do a left turn, I realized something. I slowed down and stopped on the side. The DI looked at me with a puzzled expression on his face. And the conversation went this way:

DI: Why did you stop? I did not tell you to stop.
Me: I forgot to put on my seatbelt.
DI: You were driving for 30 minutes without a seatbelt?
Me: Yes. (With an embarrased smile.)
DI: Good thing we did not run into an accident. I should have checked.
Me: Sorry.

At that time, I was more scared being caught red handed by the police. After letting out a nervous laugh, I put on my seatbelt and continued driving.

On my 5th hour, I forgot to put on my seat belt again. This time it was the DI who noticed it after I drove for 5-10 minutes. Darn! I need a car similar to my cousin; an alarm will set off if the driver or passengers don’t have their seat belts on. How I wish… Sigh… Maybe in the near future? Aja!

P.S.
My avid readers were asking why I did not post an article yesterday. Sorry, I fell asleep before I can upload this article last night.  I was too exhausted driving and remembering all the rules of the road and traffic signs.

courtesy of Clipartof.com

driving

I finally started my nerve-wracking driving lesson…

Stepping on the gas instead of the break kept the car zooming away like crazy! I think that frightened my instructor a bit. I hope he won’t give up teaching me.   Sigh. It’s really frustrating because I can’t seem to do the right combination of the following driving know-how while remembering to follow the traffic rules and signs:

  • steering
  • maneuver
  • shifting gears
  • looking at all the mirrors
  • do a left and right  shoulder check
  • check the back part while reversing
  • left and right signal
  • looking out for parked cars
  • etc

Beats me why I never bothered to learn when I was younger. Maybe because I was traumatized? My mother died in a vehicular accident when I was 13 years old. It’s terrifying! Nonetheless, I need to conquer my fear and become a good and responsible driver the soonest. Driving in this side of the world is a necessity not a luxury.

Kudos to those people who’s driving skill is as smooth as eating various food in a buffet. Geez. I’m just at the starting point. I have a looooong way to go… more “bumpy” and “zooming” rides to come.

I must. I will. I can. Aja!