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When my atheism lands me in hell I swear I'm going to turn the corner on the first day and find myself staring at Walkley Driving Centre.  Honestly, the place is horrible.  Filled with bitter, unhelpful government employees and ugly green parking posts with ominous yellow lettering, tricky medians out front and a very missable turn in....I hate the place.  My test was booked for the 13th, and after my driving instructor and I practiced for close to two hours we got to Walkley only to find out all lessons were cancelled that day because it was snowing.  It even wasn't that bad.  It was Friday the 13th (the only day open for weeks when I booked), and it was probably someone with a superstitious bent who saw the snow and decided to be extra careful. 

Anyway, I wanted to get to England and I didn't want to do that without my license, as it expires in July.  The centre told me I could come back on the 24th.  And that was a horrible idea, because my instructor leaves on the 1st of March and if I failed I would have had to wait 10 days and obviously not been able to use his car and practice with the person I was used to etc. etc.  So today we sat in Walkley on standy for 3 hours, waiting for someone to cancel.

Finally someone did.  I don't think I'm a bad driver, just a very nervous one, and that carried over to the test, with my leg shaking and my arms shaking and my lip twitching.  I did loads of stupid things (I got 14 mistakes) and scared the fuck out of the tester when I drove on the right side of the median.  My driving instructor had told me to go there, but the tester was all "What are you doing????  You should be in the centre!!!"  .  I was fairly sure I'd failed the test right then and there, but anyways, I tried not to cry and somehow got back and managed to do the only decent park I've done in my life.   I turned off the ignition and  the tester just looked at me for 15 seconds going hmmm....hmmmm...hmmmm.  Then, "Yeah, OK, I'll give it to you."  My driving instructor was gobsmacked, the most mistakes he'd ever seen someone pass with was 12.  Then again, 14 is a vast improvement over the 56 from my failed G test from 3 years ago, so yeah, good?

Anyhow, I don't like driving much.  I feel nervous in traffic.  But it'll be nice to be able to drive the 5 minutes down the road to buy deoderant and park at Fallowfield station and take the downtown buses from there, and not have to wait 30 minutes for the stupid Barrhaven buses that never fucking come.  My parents wouldn't let me drive with my G2 because that wasn't a full license, which is just retarded to me.  They'll probably still be dicks about me driving now as well, ("but you're only a new driver!"), but at least I have this license if I ever come back to Canada and desperately need a car.  I hopefully will never have to drive ever again.  Northampton is small enough that downtown is a 20 minute walk from the furthest areas.  

And now I can apply for my visa.  The UK Border Agency website says all visas in my category have been processed in 10 business days, and 3/4 of those were in 5.  So now I just have to do that, then book a flight.  If luck is on my side, I'll be out of here in 3-5 weeks.  

I also started my online course.  I don't really find the trade book industry terrible fascinating, but I really like the copy editing one.  Editing is actually quite logical, which I like, but at the same time I'm editing something new and interesting all the time.  It's only been a week though, so we'll see what happens.

I'm just happy.  Happy Walkley is a thing of the past and that I did something that I find petrifying.  I still find driving quite scary, but I'm much better than I used to be and I know I can at least drive to more centrally located bus stops, even if I'll always avoid downtown. :)



Diana Racecar

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