Friday, October 01, 2004

Toxic Purity Learns To Drive Part 2

Hold on. What happened to Toxic Purity Learns To Drive Part 1? It got swallowed up by the hideous deadline nightmare crush of the previous week. All you need to know is: I only drove over the island ONCE (steered too sharply) and almost crashed into the fence ONCE (mistook accelerator for brake), but I mastered the right-hand turn eventually.

My instructor is a lovely gentleman named Noel who retired from teaching speed and precision driving to the cops and apparently misses all that heart-stopping adrenalin action.

For my second ever lesson, I learnt to steer left, how to reverse-turn down a steep incline (actually that was an impromptu lesson after I nearly drove us into a tree), and then he put me onto the road.

I crawled out the carpark on Horatio St that nobody uses because of its exciting incline, and down towards Nelson.

"Now indicate left," says Noel.

"Indicate?" I said in a panic.

"Ah, right. We haven't done that yet. Don't worry. You're doing just fine."

I like Noel. He's very reassuring.

Now Nelson is a long curving stretch between the WACA, Trinity College and Gloucester Park, which means half the road is taken up with parked cars whose side mirrors I have to avoid taking out. It also means any driver caught behind me was essentially trapped.

My favourite was the poor sod who finally managed to edge around me when I pulled over and he sped past, only to be surprised by a couple of cops training with a speed gun.

I think I'm enjoying this way too much. It's like the terror you experience on a roller-coaster, except you're steering. I also recommend the Nelson, Nile, Waterloo, and Horatio circuit. It has hills, curves, light traffic, and pretty riverside views. But you probably don't want to be there early on Thursday afternoons; that's when I'm on the road :)

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