Driving Test

When I came to the United States my son told me that the first thing I would need here was my driver’s license. He was sure that I would not have any problems with the test since I had been driving for a long time. I had my doubts, having had my experience in driving on the left-hand side, but he brushed the objections away by saying be sure to make correct left turns and you are sure to pass the test.

I got a hundred on my written test. The next day my son suggested that I take my test at a place twenty-five miles from home so that I could have some driving practice. He started the car and asked me to drive. We reached the destination safe and sound.

I got nervous when I realized that my son would not be in the car during the test. I even found it hard to select the right key for the car from the bunch he handed me. I found it on a third attempt. We settled down. I started the car and brought it out on to the road. My examiner said. “Please turn right at the next intersection.”

Intersection! I had never heard the term before. I started guessing. Is it the next street, next stop sign I see, or the next traffic light? Soon I passed the intersection. My examiner seemed a little upset, but he reconciled and repeated his request. I was confused again. Now the question in my mind was; should I ask him what intersection means or just pretend as if I know. By the time I decided that I should not ask questions, the second intersection was gone. (I came to know it later. I didn’t know it at that time.)

“Ok, “The examiner said, “now from the next stop sign you turn left.
I was so nervous that I did not hear him clearly. “Left?” I asked.
“Right.” he said.
I immediately turned right.
“I said left,” he said emphatically.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I thought you said right.
“When I said right I meant correct.

You should have said, “correct” then, I thought, but did not say anything. He let me drive straight for some time. The car was gaining speed and I was gaining some confidence when suddenly I saw a red light flickering up ahead on a few dangling wires, right in the middle of the road.

“What do I do now?”
“Ma’am, you are taking the test, not me.”

I decided not to talk to him again. He seemed to be a rude person, though whatever he said, he said politely.

Next he asked me to make a three point turn, which I made bumping my car only three times, God knows into what. He told me to return to the licensing facility and I did.

After parking my car, I had my confidence back. I told him that I didn’t know what an “intersection” was.

He coughed as to say, “not my fault, ma’am.” He looked at me and then towards the sky. I imagined what he was thinking.” If you don’t know what an intersection is, don’t try for a driver’s license but go for a pilot’s license because there are no intersections in the air.”

    Copyright © 2004 Razia Fasih Ahmad