I’ve been driving solidly for about 9 months now. In order to renew a license here in Ireland, you must first apply for a test. My license is due to expire in July, so i applied for a test way back in January.
Today i got a letter stating that i’ll have my test on Tuesday May 29th at 11.50am. Quite a nice time i think.. a tuesday is fairly quiet in town, and i’ll just miss the lunch hour from 1-2pm, so i’m pretty pleased with that time. It also gives me a chance to take last ditch lessons on the morning of the test
Anyway, i’m very confident i’ll pass first time. Nothing phases me in driving and i’ve yet to have a crash or dent in the car mind you, i have had some close calls, but none down to my driving.. the overall standard of Irish Driving is woeful, and that’s down to our older drivers and license system which allows anyone to hop in a car and drive anywhere – even if you’ve never driven a car in your life. Our older drivers were simply ‘given’ licenses back in 70′s So i’ve no doubt all the bad habits and lack of knowledge have been passed on down generations.
Things are improving though, and as far as i know, Ireland will have to comply with EU regulations by 2010 which will mean a much tougher testing system and higher standards. Mind you, 50% of tests are failed every day in this country, so you can imagine what that figure will be like once the test becomes harder
Reverse around a corner, start on a hill, do a 3-point turn.. and that’s pretty much it. The rest is just cruising along through town so the examiner can check you on your signals, mirrors, anticipation and all that common sense stuff.
The only reason i’ll fail is for speeding or not having hands correctly placed on the wheel at all times. But for 45 minutes, i think i’ll manage. It’s a mental challenge now, the practical side of things isn’t an issue for me thankfully.
So i’ve worked out my tactics for the test already. I’ve tested them out and my driving improves a lot… I’ll simply pretend i’m driving with a bomb under the car. Go over 30 miles/hr and i kill myself. Don’t use the handbrake on hills / at traffic lights, and i kill myself. Let my hands slip down on the steering wheel, and i kill myself.
So come the driving test, that’s what will be going on in my head. Stupid – but it works.