I’ve always really loved driving, although I definitely find it hard and a lot to remember I really enjoy it. Before I got back into the car after a year out of driving I was absolutely terrified that I was going to forget everything and have to start all over again but I couldn’t have been more wrong. I must admit turning on the ignition and putting the car into first gear felt very strange at first but that was quickly diminished as I set off on my first lesson back.
They say driving a car is like riding a bike in that you never forget it and I think that’s right. I felt a lot calmer than I thought I would and I found that I still remembered exactly what to do with my feet and in terms of gears etc. I think the majority of my issues are confidence so with time that will gradually improve, but with the physical manoeuvring of the car, I definitely haven’t forgotten what to do.
I actually feel that after having a long break it all feels a lot more natural to me now. Over the last year I have been in several cars with friends and family and I found myself watching them driving and thinking about what they’re doing with their feet and hands and how it all works.
A lot of things that previously confused me make a lot more sense to me now. An example of this is roundabouts, specifically your position on the roundabout. Obviously if you’re going to be going past 12 o’clock, you’re going to take a right hand approach, going onto the middle of the roundabout so that it doesn’t take as long rather than drive the full circumference of the roundabout. Taking the right hand approach and going to the middle to then signal off left when you’re approaching your exit just makes sense to me now, whereas before I really struggled to grasp it.
Alongside my practical lessons I have also been using the DTS Anytime software. This has been so helpful to me, it is mainly for people about to take their theory as it provides you with revision material, mock tests and advice. However, the software also contains a section for your practical test which shows a series of videos relating to your practical test and all the things you’ll have to know. I’ve found it really helpful watching these videos; particularly for the manoeuvres.
The software comes with videos on; basics and routines, moving off and stopping, junctions, on road skills, manoeuvres, hazards and the practical test. It’s helpful watching someone else doing it when you’re trying to run through it in your head. They also go over the ‘show me tell me’ section which is the part of the test at the beginning where the examiner will ask you one show me and one tell me question about the car.
Overall, I’m currently really enjoying driving again and being back in the car, I am so glad I decided to not give up and come back to driving and I am loving my new confidence in driving and being back behind the wheel. My lessons are going really well and I have booked my third test so fingers crossed for a third time lucky pass!