I’ve had my learner’s license for a long time now. Some might say a ludicrously long time. Some heartless people may even laugh if I tell you I’ve had it so long that it’s expired once already and needed to be renewed. But let me assure you, it is not from being unable to achieve the ridiculously high number of recorded hours in NSW. It’s not from any retarded motor skills or eye condition. I have extremely good vision, in fact, and am a pretty skilled driver, if I do say so myself, if a little speedy at times. No, it’s none of these reasons. It’s mostly apathy, actually. I just never really bothered. And now that I have Tim to drive me every which where I can’t get at by public transport, I’ve seen even less reason to upgrade to being able to drive on my own. So, as I watched all my friends, from as early as our senior years in high school, more than 5 years ago, getting their P plates (we have two over here) and having their parents buy for them their first cars, because they’re rich, I’ve only had occasion to drive myself somewhere when it just so happened a parent or other full licensed driver was with me, and purely for my own driving pleasure.
But this extended period, I feel, has put me in a unique position to champion the rights and protest the injustices that are done to these poor L-platers, myself included.
Since we came to Sydney, my parents have given Tim and I use of my Mum’s car, as long as she isn’t working. This is very kind of her! It’s given Tim and I a lot of freedom, such as it is, to be able to get out of the house when we’re developing some nasty cabin fever. Until recently, I was doing all of the driving in these situations, as Tim has his full license, so can be my supervisor, and it was thought that he was unable to drive our tiny car. So, as you can imagine, I’ve had even more time lately to come to realise just what a large percentage of full-licensed, and -gasp!- P-platers hate and overtly look down on these poor people who are, for the most part, teenagers, who are just beginning to learn the ropes of being in a very serious, and sometimes difficult situation.