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Saturday, 16 April 2016

The Automatic Car

In Australia when I told people that I could drive they would ask 'can you drive a manual?', and I'd look at them incredulously, even piteously, thinking 'well duh! I said I could drive!'

But automatic cars are the choice out there, and although as a 'manual driver' I felt my superiority keenly, when it came to driving my first automatic car I could understand their popularity; it was sooooo easy.

Me and my man friend were leant a relative's automatic car to explore the Victorian countryside (Victoria the state, not the era....).

All was going well; we were enjoying the sunshine, a few days off work, out of the city, away from the hostel, stunning lush countryside, coasting along, and then we spotted them: dozens of kangaroos.

Stopping in a teeny tiny country lane we jumped out, clambered through some bushes and watched the, rather intimidating, marsupials, completely engrossed.

Suddenly a great honking sound pierced the air.

A lorry, god knows what it was doing there, was trying to get past our car.
We clambered back through the bushes, and emerged looking decidedly suspicious.

With an apologetic nod at the judgemental driver we jumped in the car. It would not start. Oh my god, it would not start. We tried everything. Nope. Not even a whirr. Shit. My man friend was now signalling to the lorry driver as if to suggest I'm just a dippy woman. I was panicking. I'm a nervous driver at the best of times. I was becoming fraught. Shit. My man friend was not helping.

Mr. lorry driver eventually jumps down and walks over to us. Getting out of his way I let him slide into the driver's seat. The car starts immediately, of course.

'You have to have your foot on the brake to start the car, love' ....