Happy Birthday, Madi!


To celebrate Madi’s 16th Birthday she is having a Road Trip hop and I wouldn’t miss it for nothin’ because I love Madi and Mom and I LOVE cars! Both my parents were car lovers so how would I miss getting the car loving gene? We are to tell a story about learning to drive… if our parents taught us, if we went the driver’s ed route, and the fun or not so fun things that might have happened. So I am going to tell the story about learning to drive and the day I took my drivers license test. Here it is Madi and Mom… the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. It got pretty ugly.

I wasn’t much interested in learning to drive. Most of my friends had their license but I was more interested in horsing around… literally. I preferred the real kind of horse power instead of the engine under the hood kind. And truthfully, I was scared to death to have my Dad teach me to drive. He was a cool Dad but he didn’t have a lot of patience. Our first learning to drive session was our last after driving to the parking lot at my high school and tooling around there briefly and driving back home. He threw open the back door and yelled to my Mom to call the drivers ed guy you had to pay to get legally on the road. Did I mention my Dad was a bit short on patience?

So, I did the driving lessons with a man in our tiny town. Our private Catholic high school didn’t offer drivers ed but it did have morning mass where you could pray that you would pass your drivers test. I didn’t pray hard enough. Took the first few lessons in the instructor’s car, you know, where he had a dual set of controls so there weren’t any mishaps. And then you drove the car you were going to use for the test. My dad drove a 1967 Chevy Impala, it was a tank, and my Mom had a little white Ford Falcon convertible with red seats… it was sweet. My Dad went out and traded it on a 1966 green Mustang but that’s a whole other story… my Mom was inconsolable. I finished out the driving lessons in the little convertible and all was good. I hit the I55 highway to St. Louis with my Dad and he declared me a damn good driver… said I drove like a man! No sissy girly driving for his daughter.

The day of the test he wanted me to take the TANK… what the heck? He drove me there and he parked on the street on a slight decline and turned the wheels into the curb. He had NEVER done that before but he had heard a whole lot about turning the front wheels into the curb on hills for the past few weeks. Into the license office we went and I got a nice police guy with a buzz cut like you would have expected. I was not then and am not now good at any kind of test so I was terrified, intimidated, and my Dad was standing there with his hands in his pant’s pockets rocking back and forth in his shiny wingtips. I just wanted him to go get a coffee and a couple of eggs over easy… anywhere else but where I was going to be taking my test.

Buzz Cut slid into the passenger seat and I reluctantly got in the driver’s seat. There were some preliminary instructions and questions and then he told me to start her up. I did… that went well. Put the car in drive, it was an automatic on the floor, and gave the gas pedal a little nudge. The car would not move forward. Buzz Cut said to give it a little more gas and so I did. This is where it got ugly. I gave it too much gas, jumped the curb, and hit the parking meter… I mean hit the parking meter hard enough that it was listing quite a bit. I was mortified, in shock, and my Dad was running towards his beloved gold Impala. Buzz Cut said that was it for me and that I might like to come back and try again on another day in six months… YEAH, on another day when my Dad hadn’t cut the tires to the curb and in the sweet little car of my Mom’s that I knew like the back of my hand. I didn’t talk to my Dad for a week and I didn’t go back for my drivers license for a year.

I passed my test with flying colors a year later, maybe less than year. My girlfriends were all sympathetic, no snickering, at least that I know of. Well, there was one girlfriend that laughed and made me feel miserable but she isn’t a friend anymore. CH says I still drive like a guy… Hey, I think I drive like a woman who knows cars. I love a manual four on the floor but both our vehicles now are automatics. I had a jeep for a short time a few years back and that industrial sized shift and clutch put my back out. Sent that to the used car lot! I still love cars, I love to drive… fast, with the radio up. And I never, NEVER cut my front wheels to the curb even if I am parking on a mountain. When I put a car in park that car better dang well stay in park!

 

Participating in ROAD TRIP for Madi’s 16th Birthday!

Click on the badge above to see other Road Trip stories for Madi’s Birthday.

Happy 16th Birthday, Madi!

38 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Madi!

  1. What a hilariously FABULOUS story. I would have told my learning to drive story but it was totally boring. So I went with a crazy road trip of sorts. I know Madi will be happy you lined up to “spill your guts” on your tale of terror – as I read yours I just thought to myself “those were the days” – AND it reminded me that I was glad my Mom was my teacher and not my very impatient Dad!

    Love, Pam

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    1. Why my Dad wanted me to drive that dang tank I will never know. My Mom pleaded with him to let me drive her little convertible. I think he just wanted the cop to see his cool car! Oh well, now it is a funny, dear memory… LOL! I hung my head down for a few days there and then I went out and threw a saddle on Rumbles and rode the whole thing off!

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    1. Your Mama’s story made me laugh tears! I knew she would have a good road trip story! I can truly see her and her friends! We both should have stuck to horses! Try to parallel park a horse, hey, that would have actually been easier!

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      1. yes… but the horses my grampy bought were like the crazy audi… he always bought by eye&wallet and without asking any questions… why the former owner looks like a mummy, wrapped in bandages or why someone is still in hospital and not at the horse fairy…

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        1. LOL! Buying horses is always a risky venture. Lady, my heart horse… nobody told us she was used for barrel racing and it wasn’t till well after I bought her that one day on a ride in the desert (we were at Ft. Bliss, El Paso, TX then) that she would do an explosive buck and a quick 360 degree spin simultaneously and sit me on my fanny in the sand burrs! At least she stayed with me and bent her head down to give me a snort.I broke her of doing it regularly but every now and then she would surprise me but I stayed stuck to that saddle like glue! She became a fairly good dressage horse and she loved to jump but she stunk on the trails!

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  2. MOL MOL Horse power! mom says Buzz cut mighta given her her road test too, ohhhhhhno what an embarrassing first attempt to jump the curb killing the meterπŸ™€πŸ™€β€ΌοΈβ€ΌοΈπŸ˜» I bet you were wishing you had a 🚜. Thankfully the parking area at the DMV here was flat with all marked spots no need turning the wheels. Mom is purrt sure she would have jumped the curb too.
    Thank you for the lol oh and drive safely. Hugs Madi your bffff and mom

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  3. Just a great story, Pix! You write so well!! It brought back so many memories too.

    I will click to see other Road Trip stories for Madi’s Birthday. Thanks!

    Wishing you and CH a lovely Sunday!
    Lots of hugs!
    .

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    1. Awww, thanks for the good words, Sonia. But, I am not a writer, I would love to be but I get all befuddled with words and can’t organize my thoughts. I just type it and go with it. Hoping you are enjoying your Sunday and big HUGS back at you!

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  4. My mother, who was a terrified driver, taught me to drive. My dad was gone so there was no one else. We both survived and I passed on the first try. I don’t know why your dad would have you drive a car you had little experience with. It’s a guy thing.

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    1. My Dad could be insensitive at times. I am not sure he was happy to have had a kid. But he was a good guy and he had a wonderful sense of humor. My girlfriends all thought he was a “hunk”… LOL! I didn’t get his good looks but I did get his crummy heart issues! He could have at least passed his wavy thick hair to me! I had driven the tank but the killer of the deal was the cutting the wheels to the curb and I forgot he had done it. My Mom was a terrified driver which is why she begged off I am sure.

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  5. Thank you for sharing your story. I wouldn’t have laughed at you back then, but it did give me a chuckle now. How awful that your Dad duped you. Would you believe I have been driving since 1986 and I still can’t drive on highways, I just drive around town. I let my mom, niece and hubby chauffer me.

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    1. Hey, nothing wrong with having a chauffeur. I hardly drive at all anymore because CH does all the driving since he retired in 2007. I don’t mind, but I do love to drive the quiet stretches of highway on the way to Florida and cruise along at about 80 with Smooth Jazz on the radio… πŸ™‚ I haven’t put gas in either of our vehicles in over two years… I am not kidding. And I am glad you chuckled… it was funny!

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  6. Great story!!!! My best friends’s brother taught me how to drive when I was 14 yrs old. He had a Chevy Nova, all supped up 4 on the floor. We had a blast driving that car. When I got my permit my parents were shocked I did so well ..that is until my best friends mom told mine how I learned how to drive. My mom was mad at her for telling her before and at me for driving with out a license. By the time the drivers ed class came around to the “W’s” I already had my license but I took it anyhow to get the insurance discount. My first car was copper “MONEY COLORED” chevy . Huge one with the big fin fenders πŸ™‚ Loved that car!

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    1. Carol, you are a car gal! I love that you are… should of known with that cool truck you have! I learned to drive a stick in a little turquoise V-dub. I love to drive a stick but as we have gotten older I like not having to work that clutch. You need to hunt up that big fin fendered Chevy and let me see it… LOL! You know, it kills me that we didn’t take pictures way back but in all the best ways we were too busy living our lives to stop and take pictures! I can see that Chevy Nova!

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  7. Sorry, I confess, I did snicker. Just a little. Ok, okay, I laughed till coffee spurted out my nose {not really but close}. Sounds like your mom ‘traded up’ on the car thing. Those days of learning how to drive…ugh. Thank gawd I’m old enough to have [mostly] forgotten how awful they were. Happy sweet 16 to Madi!

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    1. Laughing is good, I don’t mind… it is funny. You should have seen my Dad’s pant legs flapping as he ran to check on the gold tank… I still remember that! Yes. the Mustang was a fun ride. I got to drive it after school, but Mom loved that little convertible… memories.

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  8. This was hilarious and brought back so many of my own memories! If it makes you feel better, I flunked the first time I took the test too. Apparently running a stop sign is not cool. Thanks for making me smile. Oh and thanks for commenting on my rant even if you did delete it. I know how that goes!

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    1. I hate that you flunked the first time too but it is nice to have company! Running a stop sign… hmmm, not as bad as taking out a parking meter and then there was the damage to the gold tank. We should form a club… πŸ™‚

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  9. I bet that driving examiner always remembered you! πŸ˜€

    That’s the trouble with cars – just blindly follow orders as they have no intelligence! A horse would have known exactly what to do.

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  10. Good Morning Pix! Well our big snow of the year is almost gone already…not a complaint here πŸ™‚ i think March is going to be like the rest of the winter has been up and down with the temps and more snow than we’ve had all winter. So far the computer is holding on so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I have all of my file saved on an external hard drive so if it goes I shouldn’t lose much. Just the inconvenience of the whole thing 😦

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  11. Just found the culprit to the reason I was in your spam…
    The comment we made on Madi’s bday went to that wordpress account thing that starts cecilia07.
    I just changed everything on the March 11 blog post you did for Madi’s bday.
    Hugs Cecilia and Madi

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