Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Vintage Car N Getting a Driver's Licence

Ain't that a beauty? A vintage Chevrolet ?

It's housed in Hotel Ajit at Pune (near FC Road), where I'd been a few days back to refresh my mind from the stressful situations at work and in my life. My youngest brother works and studies at Pune, so he joined me there.

This car is always parked in front of the lobby entrance. This hotel is reasonably priced and that's why our family stays there when we visit Pune. I clicked the snap while checking out with the permission of the owner of the Hotel. People tend to be quite touchy about such prized possessions, so I didn't want to take a chance. This car is definately huge. The height and length is somewhere close to an Innova, though the seating capacity is like a normal car, only more spacious.

These days I am quite amused by cars. Especially since I started to learn to drive. Though my driving sessions were completed a month back, I couldn't get time for going for an RTO test. And since I was on leave, I decided to go this Monday (yesterday). My driving school has arrangement only on Mondays. I'd heard that driving tests were quite easy and 'andha kanoon' is generally practiced. I wanted extra sessions before I could go for the test, but unfortunately no time-slot was vacant. So I took a chance. I'd heard how officers just wait outside and tell you to drive. And pass you anyways. Of course getting a learner's licence is much easier. You give a theory test and I got full ten on ten!

I'd never been to or watched a driving test being taken. But I can say that what all I'd heard, does not hold true for getting a permanent driving licence. At least not with the young police officer on duty yesterday. He made it a point to sit next to every wannabe- licence holder and watch him/ her drive the car. He was very strict with all and had stern comments for nearly everyone. I was nervous. I started off well. Ignition... clutch... first gear.... releasing clutch slowly.... increasing accelator.... Suddenly the officer ordered, 'Second gear'. My heart skipped a beat. I pulled the gear back without pressing the clutch. The car started vibrating like crazy! He got wild and blurted why I should be given a licence! So I didn't get an okay. Neither did another female with me. But she could not start the car properly. At least, I was driving smoothly until that officer opened his mouth.

My driving school officials requested for a re-test coz I wasn't that bad. And I had to wait for my turn in the scorching heat till almost other schools were through. I was nervous and thirsty. The other lady with me was still not sure, so decided to take the test next Monday. But I wouldn't have time once I'd had to report to office. Three more guys joined from our school for a the test and were trying to boost my morale.

Finally my turn came. I remained cool, trying to ignore the presence of the officer. Ignition...clutch.... first gear..... accelerator........ And then he remembered where I'd gone wrong. 'Second gear', he blurted. Before I could go blank again, I pressed the clutch, went into second gear and smoothly drove. 'Stop at the side', he commanded. I moved sideways and applied brakes. No mistakes this time. He said 'okay' and signed my papers. That was a relief. I'll be holding a driving licence very soon. But as luck would have it, two of the other guys delayed in getting the engine started. And the officer could not tolerate such errors! 'Failed', he scribbled on their papers. So, I request everyone to take a driving test seriously, especially if you're affliated to the Thane RTO. Who knows you might bump into some strict officer!

Now I'd like to buy a used car to practice more till I get perfect. And this Chevrolet isn't a bad idea. At least not for me! But the owner might have other thoughts :)

1 comment:

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