Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Tennessee Drivers: Beware

A highly anticipated event of the summer was Firstborn getting her driver's license. She got her learner's permit last summer, drove as much as she could while in the USA last summer, drove back roads in Turkey with a stick shift cargo van, and we felt she was ready to test. We called to make her appointment and were told that there were no openings until late July or early August! (What? Come on, Tennessee!) She was disappointed. I called to tell her the news while she was out driving with her Grandad. But then I called back and reached an extremely helpful man in the Tenn Dept of Transportation. He told me to hold on, it looked like he had a cancellation if were were willing to drive up to McMinnville for her to test. I said, "We'll take it!"

And when she got home, I told her the story of my first year out of college. I'd worked hard to graduate in 3 years and all I wanted was to teach. Summer was turning into school starting time. My sweet dad put me in the car, and we drove to school after school. We stopped at a pay phone and looked in the yellow pages. I saw a school name "Mt. Pleasant Christian Academy." I called, and the man on the phone said, "I know you. I was your high school basketball coach. I just had a teacher quit this morning. Come see me." The rest was history. The Lord working out a last minute cancellation to surprise and bless my daughter, along with a parent helping to work things out for a disappointed daughter, reminded me very much of that experience. Firstborn threw her arms around me. She'd get to test the next day afterall!

So we made the drive and planned to spend an extra night at the lake house, not far from there.

She's the first. So we usually have to plow the ground with her. We had no idea what to expect, and she was nervous.

She was so happy to see it was an old man testing her. She said it made her less nervous! And other than almost turning left when he said right, she did fine! (When he said, "Wait! What are you doing? I said "right," she said, "Oh, I'm sorry, I was checking my blind spot while you told me." Score for the teenager! I am sure that impressed him!)
She passed, and my little girl is now a licensed driver! We stopped and ate lunch together, and I gave her a new Tennessee t-shirt to congratulate her.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dave taught the kids to drive as soon as their feet would reach the petals (really) but it was mom who had to sit through the nerve racking driving test. In our county in Mississippi there is a fearsome woman State Trooper who has probably tested most of the kids in Desoto County. They all know her. She never smiles. She failed Kathleen and though Kathleen was out of high school and proud owner of a brand new Honda Civic, the next time, she made Kathleen get proof of enrollment forms . . , no doubt she remembered her. Legally Kathleen did not have to but this was not a woman you argued with. I never worried that my kids could drive because if Atilla the Hun (what we nicknamed her) passed them, they could drive!

Congratulations Mary Erin!


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