One careful lady driver


So. Not that I was ever exactly a wild thing behind the wheel, I am now, officially, an old person. Because that’s the way I drive. Not because I go out for a very slow drive on a Sunday with my husband of 60 years who sports a trilby, while I wear a headscarf and pack a basket containing a tupperware box of meat paste sandwiches and a thermos of tea (though it does sound fun, doesn’t it? Picnicking at a beauty spot without getting out of the car. Smashing).

No, it’s more because I sit with hands clenched on the wheel, leaning forward, peering through the windscreen and, yes, muttering to myself. Junction, junction, mirror, signal, manoeuvre, you’re doing great, schoolkids up ahead, nothing to worry about, white van white van white van. And so it goes. The hypnotic babblings of the half-exposed unconscious. Still, the instructor didn’t seem to mind. In fact, he said I was fine and didn’t need any more refreshers, I was good to go. It took a moment to rearrange my expression from Jesus-are-you-mad to pleasant-and-unperturbed, but it’s been a week since the lesson and I find myself actually wanting to have another go at it. It was, kindof, fun.

I wonder if that’s just the sort of sentiment that angers capricious gods. We’ll soon find out. White van white van white van.


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