The Woes and Joy of getting a Driving Licence

18th November 2008

I gripped the steering wheel of a rickety-over-500-people-driven Indica that the driving school had provided me with   (Kimi had been begging me not to take up the classes ...he's scared you see.... He thinks  I might beat Danica Patrick to an F1 seat in a few years ..He He He...and he's worried Ferrari might sign me up...Hehehe!!)

18th February 2009

I gave my driving test and passed... I can now officially drive on the Indian roads at least...No Super licence yet...But Kimi...you better watch out!! :P :P


Ok the classes shouldn't take so long to complete but this was yet another typically laid-back Hyderabadi attitude, both on the behalf of the instructor and myself. I missed too many classes in between and he didnt turn up for a few coz "its too cold in December to wake up at 6"... Heck, was he teaching me drive on a hill station?? 

I'd been pretty confident of driving by mid-January and I kept asking him to book my slot with another student who was supposed to go around the same time. The instructor kept postponing my slot and two weeks ago he informed me that I'll have to give the test on a Maruti 800. My turn to freak out.

Its a drastic shift from Diesel to Petrol vehicle and I wasnt too confident of driving the Maruti 800, especially after bumping Mom's car into that of our neighbours. I refrained from trying out the Maruti and kept practicing on the Indica. So when he said I'd have to drive a Maruti, I asked him to give me a little more time. He was more than happy to do so. I tried mom's car, once ALMOST crashing into the main gate. Sunday we had a long session and I drove the car for a good distance to gain some confidence. Yesterday I drove the Indica on my way back home, and my driver said in his heavy North-eastern accent : 
"Ma'am, aap chalaa lega gaadi.... tenshun mat lo" (Ma'am you will drive well, dont stress).

 I asked : "Main fail to nahi ho jaungi na, aise gaadi chala kar?" (Would I fail if I drive this way?) 

And he said: "Nai Madam...Phel to nahi hote...aaraam se chalao" (No, You wont fail...just drive with ease)

I called up my instructor and told him I was ready to give my test today. He asked me to be at the Driving track at Nagole by 8 in the Morning. I reached by 7.30 and called up this person I was asked to contact. He came fashionably late at 8.40 and gave me my papers. I sat for a while, saw the track layout and tried to understand it. I was worried about the reverse track, which seemed very tricky. 

Kept getting more and more nervous. Tried to calm myself by deep breathing techniques learnt at the ART OF LIVING class. I said, the worst that'll happen is I'll fail. No problem. Come back in 7 days and give test again. Practice more. Meanwhile Alankar called me up and wished me luck. He helped me lighten up my mood and I felt at ease. 

At 10, I was asked to go and give my test. I had managed everything well. The S-Track, 8-roundabout track. Then came the H-Reverse track.  Managed the first 3 parts of the reverse and forward quite well, but messed up on the last part. Not completely messed up, but I didnt take the turn as it was supposed to be taken. Got out of that section, went on the Ghat-type-road segment to the last stretch of the track and out of it. Once I parked and went to the cabin, the officer smiled and said, "You goofed up a little on the reverse, but good presence of mind". He smiled back and stamped a "PASSED" on my forms and receipt. Then he said, "Why taking so much tension, relax now. I'm not scaring you by any chance, am I?". 

I had to let out something that I was refraining from telling him. I told him that 3 years ago, me and 2 other friends had come for the 2-wheeler licence and he was one of the officers taking the test that day. He had failed one of my friends for not taking one particular turn, and after I messed up the reverse, I thought he would fail me this time. He just laughed it off and said "Congratulations. Have a good day". It was a good experience this time around. People seemed much more co-operative all of a sudden. My last few experiences at RTAs have been real bad with in-charges shouting for no reason.

I called up Papa and told him that I had passed and the licence would come via courier in 2-3 days. Papa said now I have to drive more often and take the car into traffic as many times as possible. Hyderabad traffic....I have the licence....to add to your woes....grrr!! But..Yipeeee!! :)

Cheers! :)

36 Observations:

  1. --xh-- said...:

    wow!!! congratz... now u need to take the car out more often.. drive as much as you can, and enjoy the drive... (but let poor kimi drive his Ferrari - they looks like made for each other :-D )

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Anoop

    True...Hehehe... Kimi Beta, enjoy!! :P

  1. Reflections said...:

    Wooaaah!!!! Didnt know there were so things to do in a test for a DL in India. I got mine almost 16 yrs ago[sheesh I feel so ancient] at the age of 18.
    And it was so coool....just 1 round around the park...a left turn or something...no reverse, no kaccha road or whtever.

    Times have sure changed huh!!!

    CONGRATS, u must be so thrilled.....so when's the treat????? Heeheee I love to ask this question like as if I'm still in college;-P.

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Nance

    Yeah..even I didnt know there was so much to do... it wasnt this way about 8 years ago either when my Mom took her test... but it was fun...thrilled at getting the licence...not so thrilled about driving in the Hyd traffic :P

    Treat...whenever u want..but wherever I want :P

  1. Rakesh said...:

    What? No Chai-paani and instructors talking decently? and an actual track layout and a test???

    Are you still talking about India?

    Neways, Congratulations Smriti! So who are you going to drive with first up?

    I remember, when I bought my new car, every girl who used to sit in it for the first time, I used to tell her - "You're the first girl who's sitting on my passenger seat." :)

  1. sawan said...:

    congraaatz.. :P
    so wen is the treeat??
    hope to cya soon on Gachibowli highway stretch :P

  1. Rahul said...:

    Dont forget to take the car out often, else Indian roads will make u feel u hav forgotten driving !! :D

  1. Sam_2 said...:

    Hey Smritz, party!!! and we want NOW :)

    waise for my 2 wheeler and 4 wheeler license i never gave a test and just some bucks did the trick!!

    :))

  1. Mithe said...:

    congrats on the license! Hope you keep a good steady going on the roads-enjoy the freedom:)

  1. Ria said...:

    Congrats gurl and drive responsibly!! :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Rakesh

    Yeah...still India dude...My mom asked me the same question...you seem to be on the same wave length as her :P

    And someone gave me that dialogue too...like Sallu miya said to Madz aunty in Hum Aapke Hain kaun- "Tum pehli ladki ho jo meri gaadi ki front seat par baithi hai"...Then I knew there were at least 4 such "firsts" :P

    Driving with first up would be dad :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Anil

    Soon Soon ..hehehehe... I'm waiting to drive up on those roads...will let u know and take directions again... :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Sam

    Grrrr....Saale tum logo ki to aish hai...humko faaltu mein ghumaaye hai....grrrrr :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Rahul

    Sure thing :) Dad said so too... Sigh!! :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Mithe

    Thanks :) Will try my best to enjoy it as much as I can :) Hugs :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Ria

    Aye Aye Captain :)

  1. Renu said...:

    Congratulations:),for me its a big feat, as I learned driving twice, even took the license but except for initial days, could never drive, so scared of traffic on the road that my H used to make fun of me...tum to jangal me chala sakti ho bus:)..jahan sadak par tumhaare siwa koi na ho:)

  1. niceguy251 said...:

    Smriti,

    Congratulations. Relax. Do not be under tension while driving.

    I was looking for reply to my comment in your previous post.

    Take care

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Renu

    Thank You so much BM :) I'm a little scared of the traffic, though more scared of my dad's scoldings....So i guess I'll learn to drive in this vehicular jungle :P :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Niceguy251

    Thank you so much fo ur comment here... I know I should be replying back there. Honestly, I didnt really know what to say there... But I guess I'll just do the needful now :)

  1. V. Archana said...:

    congrats yaar...
    check this - http://individualizingmyviews.blogspot.com/2008/06/driving-licence-for-5000-only.html

  1. Nik said...:

    Gone are the days when world was a better place to drive!! ;D

  1. Swats said...:

    wow! congratz!

    my instructor ws damnnn funny..i cudnt help laafing..he made driving vry enjoyable fr me..the cuss words he used, his funny English accent..everything abt him ws so funny

  1. god save hyderabad :P


    hhhehehee

    congratulations...ab tum yaha aapni gadi leke ana phir meiko driver bhi nhi dhundna hoyega :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Archana

    Thanks....seen the link and commented there :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Nik

    Well...you still dont know How to drive...so I guess its not so bad after all!! :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Swats

    Welcome back :) Hope the trip was good :)

    I wish I had a funny instructor too.... unfortunately he was so damn sleep early at 6 in the morning that he barely said anything except for hand signals "left-right"...i had good company in the form of other students though...so it was fine :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Sourish

    Besharam...blog ka URL change karte ho aur bataate bhi nahi?? Tumko kya laga ki licence mil gaya hai to seedhe gaadi lekar tumhaar blog par pahuh jaungi?? You can run but u cannot hide...hoohaaaaahahahahahaha!!! :P


    Aur driver?? Chalo waise bhi mandi ke din hai... saab, pagaar kitni milegi?? :P

  1. pagaar mein dher saari tofiya :P

  1. Leo said...:

    you and kimi in a specially designed two seater f1 car will be nice to see! :D

    maybe u could win the title together! :)

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Sourish

    Sahi hai...kab se aaun kaam par?? :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Vinay

    YAAAAAAAAA.... Tell that to the FIA. :D

    Good to see you back here :)

  1. jab bhi mann kare join kar lo :P

  1. Vee said...:

    Guess what? I joined, got license, lost it, and I haven't applied for the new one. Its been 8 months already I lost my DL. I am scared to enter the RTO again. And I do not want to get it done via bribe also. I am stuck.

    But you have yours and congratulations for that. Keep your DL safe. Happy Driving!!!

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Sourish

    Bata doongi ...jab mann karega :P

  1. SMRITI said...:

    @Oxy turned Vee :P

    My mom went through the same thing and I saw her turn the whole house upside down to get some proof to get a duplicate licence... Her purse had got stolen at a railway station and the licence went with it... So I guess I'm gonna be careful about it :)

 
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