Things I Need to Do
This is not a bucket list but something I need to do as my personal battles. I was contemplating on the things I need to do that I have shelved for sometime, waiting for opportune moment which may not come. I’ve learned that “just do it” won’t work. It must be planned with lots of determination.
One, learning how to drive. I had my driver’s license in 2002 or 2003 and kept on renewing it but not driving since I had drivers. I am proud to say that those PNP personnel who were my drivers are now Police Chief Inspector (Major) and the other is Police Senior Inspector (Captain), even had a civilian driver who is now a police officer. The truth is, I was not motivated to do the driving myself. I am better off with driver or riding a taxi and it’s more economical but not liberating. I decided to drive myself and although I knew the basic, I learn that there’s a lot that driving school can teach me. I would never teach my children how to drive. It must be done professionally and this is not where I am good at.
The driving lessons and lectures were very helpful to boost my confidence although it did not take away the fear, it gave me confidence. At first I was hesitant to drive on my own and to say the least people around me, friends and family except for Sheila did not trust me to be on my own. Well, not really on my own. I need a co-pilot I said to guide me. I should be allowed to drive on my own under the guidance of a competent driver. Some driver would not want to be just passenger that I learned. Sheila and Beth thanks to them knew they could trust me and I am glad they did, I was able to drive from Alabang Festival Mall via Skyway to Camp Crame. I knew I will be better.
My children although fearful came with me on my first drive with them. Patricia said that she was very much awake as if she had taken a dose of caffeine. So what? I enjoyed the kindness of the security staff of parking area in Promenade, Greenhills guiding me to be able to park properly and on a perfect spot near exit. I love people who understand the learner and the same with the other drivers on the road who were considerate of me. There is this truck driver along Ortigas Avenue who let me pass and change lane when other motorists would not let me pass even nearing Santolan where I need to turn right. Others like a bus driver and some bullies were not able to distract me, live and let live that’s what I was thinking. We returned safe in Camp Crame and I considered it an achievement.
Sunday, I need to buy groceries and paint brushes for Valerie but she refused to accompany me going to Cubao. I have to drive alone for the first time, this is my first test. I was full of confidence passing EDSA until corner of 10th St. which I need to pass going to Araneta Center. A kind driver stopped to let me pass since there was no stoplight there and was able to go through that corner with little hazard passed, I underestimated the corner but lucky for me no other vehicle was there. I did not crawled going to Cubao although the street had vehicles parked on both sides, people walking and other vehicles and tricycles going the other way which made driving a challenge. I was able to reach Shopwise parking area but since I was not familiar with the place and it was dark inside I almost missed the ticketing booth. It was still early so I stopped the car after entering I walked back to get the ticket and asked the guard for a place to park. He was very kind and gave me the spot near exit and guided me until I was able to park properly. I am glad to have this people who are very considerate.
Going back to Crame is another challenge, I was able to go out of the parking area although I almost missed the right turn outside and need to reverse driving a little. My practice driving was Cubao so I have no worries there except that I need to pass EDSA again and my turning is not perfect but I was able to follow cars and made it to EDSA. The driver of the bus behind me was not very helpful so I concentrated on driving fast and secured my lane in the middle and changed lane nearing Santolan.
The seasoned drivers would not take much credit for this accomplishment but for a newbie like me this is something to be proud of. Getting inside camp, I had another problem, I need a guide to park properly inside in a very limited space. I did not use what was taught and tried to do it my way. It was getting hot so I called somebody to do the parking for me. Why I did not ask him to guide me was because he is a police officer who would not want to sort of command me on what to do. Well, I was able to drive alone and will only need to practice on proper parking.
Looking back, I understand why I did not drive before, there exist a wall between me and people who could have taught me or allowed me to drive on my own. The best advice I got from a friend was to enroll in driving school. I told my daughters to learn from the professionals and not with someone they know. They would learn to do the right things and with the lectures to reinforce their knowledge on the rules and regulations as well as the proper way and not insisting on the right of way since not all drivers were given proper training.
I was able to get my license without the driving test and with answered examination sheets which I copied. I am not proud of it and would like all drivers to pass through a refutable driving school before a driver’s license is issued. Going to lectures in SM North, the driver of the taxi told me he attended the same driving school in 1994 and he was hired immediately. If drivers were educated well on driving regulations and traffic rules and if the traffic laws are enforced, there would be safety in our roads and highways.
Reflection: People are inherently good but sometimes you need to ask and state your circumstances to be understood and helped. I need to practice more and need more of patience and positive attitude.
Second thing that I need to do is to complete my dissertation no matter how busy I might be. I need this as sort of closure, I must complete what I have started.