"I'll just charge you five"
Many years ago I said I would never learn to drive. It just didn't appeal to me, lots of my friends had passed their driving lessons and others were in the process of learning but me, I wasn't brothered. Then I thought, what would I do if I was in a vehicle and the driver had a heart attack! If I didn't know the basics of driving then we would all perish, not just the driver! So I decided on that principle alone I would learn to drive!
It seemed like a family tradition to have the same driving teacher, his name was Mr Sat! My Mum was the only one in our family to pass with him – first time!!!! Can I just add here, in all of Mums driving life she never drove in a City! Nor has she ever been on the motorway!!! My Step Dad passed on his 13th attempt! My younger brother and I always wanted to sit in the front seat of our 2 door Anglia aquamarine coloured car except when Dad was driving, we BOTH sat in the back! And in total silence so he could concentrate! Mum told me that Dad told her that we sat in silence and Mum and Dad had a good laugh about it. Dad was a rubbish driver! And didn't drive very often only in emergencies. I don't think he should have passed!
So I started to have lessons with Mr Sat. My aim was to pass within one year! His price was £5.50 an hour so you can know it was a VERY long time ago!!! There was a lot of faults about Mr Sat he never arrived on time, when he eventually did arrive I would have to sit in the back of the car and the learner person who had just picked me up would then drive to his own home, where I would move from the back seat to the drivers seat. During my driving lesson I would then drive to the next persons home and when I got there I would sit in the back, my lesson then over! So I could be in the car 2 – 3 hours!
Of course me been a bit bolshie I would sometimes ask if I could do a three-point-turn or park reversing around the corner!
These are some of the antics he got up to while I was having my lessons with him:-
I was alone with him in the car one Summers evening when suddenly he shouted,
“What's that?” he was pointing to his feet, I looked as I was driving to his feet and I saw something horrible then to my horror he'd picked it up in a tissue and dropped it on my lap! It was fake dog poo! He put his head back and roared with laughter!!!! I could have crashed the car! All I could do was shake my head and smile!
On another occasion he arrived late as usual and said, “I've just been to have my hair cut, I have hair all down my back, can I just pop home and change my shirt?” I said, “OK” as we approached his house, his Daughter was coming in the opposite direction she was walking the dog and was about to walk in to their drive when he waved at her and gave her a big smiled, she was SO disgusted with him, she shut her eyes and turned her head away!!! I felt really embarrassed for him, goodness knows what he'd done to upset her! When he eventually came back to the car he said he felt better and has I'd missed some of my lesson he would, “Only charge me five”
I had a lesson every week and at the end I had my driving test, I failed! I was devastated! And said I would never have another lesson again! Lots of people told me most fail and it would have been a waste of money if I didn't carry on and have more lessons, so I reluctantly had lessons again with him for one year.
I remember one day a young lad was in the back I was driving in the front and Mr Sat was asking him questions, it was to do with him taking his driving test. Mr Sat asked him his full name, the lad told him and Mr Sat wrote down his answers on his important form. Mr Sat asked him his address, lad replied, Mr Sat asked him his date of birth, that was given too, then he asked him, “Are you circumcised?” Silence from the back seat! I could almost feel his chubby little cheeks burning with embarrassment behind me. My shoulders moved up and down as I tried to stifle my giggles, naughty Mr Sat! Who again chuckled to himself. I would be very surprised if he returned for another lesson.
So after another year of lessons of £5.50 once again I failed my driving test! That was it I had decided I would never have lessons again. Like his Daughter I despised him! He had wasted two years of my life and all those £5.50's and two lots of driving tests, so when I saw his orange car coming up the road I would pretend I didn't see him and look the other way! I think it bordered on hate!
For ten years I had no lessons and one day my Cousin told me about a lovely man who used to be an a driving examiner but now taught lesson instead and only put people through who he was 100% confident would pass. I had no confidence and was a a Student and didn't want to waste money as now it was dear! I made it clear to my Cousin and to him that I was only going to have a few lessons ….. well after two lessons he said I was ready for my test!! But I had no confidence and didn't feel ready, how could I pass? Well after a few more lesson more I took my test and passed! I was very very happy! I had no car, but I was happy.
I decided one day to be nice to Mr Sat who lived in his car, so I thought to myself when I see him again I will look at him and smile, he smiled back a lovely smile, I had buried the hatchet and forgiven him for all he had done.