Back Seat Driver

22 01 2013


My husband has recently started learning to drive. His lessons were a Christmas present from me as part of my ongoing project to “fix him”. It’s something of a typical female trait: find a great man, catalogue his flaws and treat him as a “work in progress”.

My latest project is to get him behind the wheel so that he can taxi me around occasionally. It would be lovely to share the responsibility so we can take it in turns to be the designated driver on evenings out and he can make his own way home from work rather tha me having to collect him from the train station.

After we had sent away the application for his provisional licence he tried to appear nonchalant but the daily excitement in his voice when he asked if anything had arrived for him in the post betrayed his enthusiasm. When he opened his “Complete Learners” book on Christmas morning with details about the lessons booked for him in January and February enclosed inside he also remained cool about the prospect of joining the ranks of British motorists. A phone call from instructor “Clive” to confirm his details a few days before his first lesson had him beaming and when the morning arrived he waited enthusiastically outside for 15minutes before his lesson was due to start.


I am satisfied that this gift was a good choice however it this has raised a number of issues that I did not fully consider before the point of purchase. On our first outing in my car after his first lesson he leaned over to me and pointed out that he felt I should have both hands on the steering wheel. My driving habits have changed over the last 5 years: I am more subtle about checking the mirrors, I no longer religiously keep my hands at a ten till two position on the wheel and occasionally I may pull up close behind another car so that I am not able to see the point where its back wheels connect with the tarmac. My husband is quick to point out these flaws and considers that after 4 hours on the road he is fast becoming a rival of Jeremy Clarkson. The arrival of his logbook only worsened the situation when his instructor updated his record his progress giving him 3 out of 5 on all the things he has learnt so far.

However I am most disgruntled by the fact that he seems to be labouring under the misapprehension that I will be putting him on the insurance for MY CAR! He thinks I am going to let him use my beloved Buttercup to PRACTICE!! Even worse he wants to DRIVE my car on completion of his test.

This turn of events is unacceptable and cannot be permitted.

I have of course resolved to consider the wider implication and impact of all future presents more carefully.

I'm part of Post A Day 2013




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