Sunday, January 12, 2014

This is Home, Part 33 - Learning to drive

This is part 33 of my mother's book about her life, written in 2004.

Learning to drive

When I was sixteen, Uncle Doc wrote to Jefferson City and got a driver's license for me. I didn't learn to drive until I was eighteen or nineteen. Girls didn't have cars in those days. They borrowed the family car. So did boys until they could earn enough money to buy one.

Uncle Doc taught me how to drive. I remember one time he said, "Where are you looking, Maudie?" I told him I was looking right in front of the car. He said no, look ahead so you will know what the road is like and what is happening there. He told me to look straight down the middle of my side.

Of course, he also laughed when I was trying to drive up a steep hill in Huntsville. It had a stop sign part way up and after I stopped, I couldn't get the car to go forward. When I tried to go forward, it slid back. So I put one foot on the brake. Then when I pushed on the gas, the car just roared and didn't move. I still wouldn't be able to get that car up that hill.

The car had a clutch, a brake, a starter, and a gas pedal. The gear shift was on the steering wheel. I just feel like shuddering when I think of it. Uncle Doc had to drive up the hill, and he didn't have a problem.

Another time, when we drove by a telephone repairman climbing a pole, Uncle Doc laughed and said, "Look, Maudie, he saw you coming."

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