“Now when you turn the corner, allow the steering wheel to come back on its own, with little guidance, except to keep you on the RI..ght side of the road…” I explained to the boy as he took a hard right turn at a local cemetery. “Mom, you’re being kind of loud,” He replied, straightening out the wheel. “Bay… Slow down, slow down and prepare to st..” Before I could finish, he slammed on the breaks and both our seat belts tightened to hold us in place. “Bay, why did you slam on the breaks?” I asked, re-positioning myself in the front passenger seat. “You said to slow down to a stop and we stopped,” He replied wearing a grin. “Bay, how often do I hit the breaks so hard we are flung against the seat belts?” I asked. He opened his mouth to speak, then thought better of it, and replied, “Okay, softer on the breaks, got it!”
The rest of the driving lesson revolved around little snippets of conversations…
“Bay?” I asked “Yessss?” He replied. “Which way are you going left or right?” I asked. “I was thinking left…” he answered”. “Well you have to make that decision before you reach the other side of the road and the option is gone…” I replied, as he stopped three quarters of the way through a three way intersection. “Oh, should I back up?” He asked. “Considering that’s your only option, I’d say yes,” I replied.
“Buddy Bay, you might want to think about stopp…” I started to say as the car came within a foot or so of hitting a fairly large headstone. Slamming on the breaks again, the car halted as did we, slamming against the seat belts. “Bay, did you not see the headstone right in front of us?” I wondered with a hint of sarcasm. “No…” “What?” I asked surprised. “I was looking in the rear view window…” “At…?” “I don’t know,” he replied. “Let me make a suggestion… when your not driving in reverse, it helps if you’re looking forward at the road you’re on,” I offered. He replied, “Oh mom, you’re always so literal…” and smiled in reply.
“You do realize we’re in a cemetery and the speed limit is like ten miles per hour–if that,” I remarked, noting how fast we were going. “This car has really good pick-up,” He commented. “Bay, slow down…please,” I said and slowly he eased off the gas pedal.
“Do we live in England?” I asked. “Okay, hang on, let me maneuver…” He replied, slowly bringing the car back onto the right side of the road.
“Um, so what are we doing?” I asked. “I’m putting the card back into drive,” the boy replied. “Okay, but is there a reason why the car is parked in the middle of the road?” “Well you asked me to back out…” He explained. “Yes, back out, to the end of the driveway, not to the middle of the road…” I replied. “Eh, no worries. Traffic is light today,” He said as he put the car into drive and he slowly pulled into our driveway and parked the car.
“Well, that was your first hour of driving. How did you like it?” I asked. “Eh, I’m disappointed you didn’t take me to lunch…” He replied. “The reward is learning to drive bay, not feeding your belly,” I quipped. “Why can’t it be both? That’s all I’m saying..” He replied. “Considering all the stopping and thrusting against our seat belts, I’m surprised you find yourself hungry,” I remarked. “You make that sound “dirty”” he replied; getting out of the car faster than usual, avoiding the inevitable smack I had coming his way. “Stop being gross!” I yelled after him, knowing that’s a futile thing say to a boy of any age.