While in Syria, I took – and passed – my drivers test. Basically you drive around a compound, label the parts of the engine, and say – word for word – the road sign descriptions. Oh, and the car is standard, you have a crowd of people – mostly guys – gawking, yelling encouragements and obscenities, and all the talking must be in formal Arabic, which I can barely understand let alone speak.
So I memorized the signs word for word – the Syrian in me came really handy: I didn’t get it, but I could say it – I learnt how to drive standard, and payed a little extra money so they’d turn a blind eye to the mechanical part of the thing. Because they teach you on a built engine, and then test you on one that’s been pulverized into itty bitty metal and rubber pieces. And for someone who used location to memorize (the crankcase is on top of the… timing chain!) I was soooo screwed over.
So drive around the city for fifteen minuets? Parallel park with no car behind me?
I’ve had to squeeze my car in a space literally the size of it. That was nothing.
No, I was more concerned with not speeding (but the road is empty!) and giving the right of way to other people. Oh and using signals, obeying traffic signs, stopping at a yellow light, not weaving, proper lane changing, and just about any thing that involves following a rule or regulation.
Yeah. It kinda turns out I’ve picked up a ton of nasty habits.
Butt…. regardless of all that: I PASSED!!