The time finally came for my first lesson. It was an early Saturday afternoon and I made sure I slept properly the night before. Internet was turned off at 10pm so I couldn't be tempted away by the lure of Netflix of YouTube videos of cute puppies. I knew I would be nervous so the night before preparations were important. They were:
- Turn off the internet at 9pm (I got distracted)
- Refrain from sugary drinks like Coke and energy drinks
- Ban myself from caffeine the day before
- Eat a load of bananas
- Take my provisional licence and counterpart out from behind the bed
My driving instructor arrived promptly, asked to see my provisional licence and before I knew it I was put in to the driver's seat. He discussed what experience I had with driving and so we started from the absolute basics. The steering wheel, gear stick, clutch and accelerator. Surprisingly, once my seat belt was fastened, the mirrors adjusted with my seat and headrest my driving instructor told me to turn the ignition on. It may sound stupid, but I wasn't expecting that so soon. So I tried some delay tactics such as asking for a recap of the different pedals. Time wasting tactics were used up by me and I had to start the engine. Before I knew it, I had the biting point of the clutch understood (I wouldn't say mastered). I was disappointed that the clutch pedal required so much work. After moving the car a few yards and then pulling up a number of times I was now driving. Actually driving. I was actually in the car, with control of it, moving it and making it go in the general direction I wanted. I couldn't believe it! Driving is so easy I thought to myself. That is, until I realised all we were doing was going straight. As soon as the straight road approached a junction I froze up. The instructions from my Driving Instructor may as well have been in Dutch. I stalled! Luckily enough my driving instructor had dual controls and was able to get us out of that particular situation. He explained that I had used the brake pedal too sharply followed by the accelerator. I forgot all about the dastardly clutch. It seems, as I first imagined, that driving wasn't so easy. Apart from that little incident the rest of the lesson went really well. I came away from it with a big smile on my face, ready to go on YouTube and try and figure out what this clutch thing was really about.