Beach fireworks and learning to drive standard

Today is a much needed lazy Sunday morning of doing nothing.

It was a long week and I was at the fireworks in English Bay last night with some friends and it was quite the production to get home. Because of lineups for the train, I had to get creative and take an alternate route so I didn’t get home until late. It was a great day at the beach though, and the fireworks by the Italian were beautiful.

West Coast city sunset.
Brava, Italia!

I’m sitting in our living room with my morning smoothie watching the Olympics (we finally got a gold medal yesterday – check out Rosie MacLennan’s golden routine that even Samuel L. Jackson tweeted about), and appreciating that I did not have to get up at 5am like Sean. Last Sunday was not lazy. I was very productive but it was super rare day that I wished I could drive. Not only did I wish that once, but twice. (Sean would gloat reading this.) Not that the car was available (Sean had taken it to work), but nonetheless.

Moment #1: I missed my train that morning which meant the next train would make me late for yoga. So I didn’t go, but wished that I could hop in the car and speed up (Down? Along?) the highway so I could still get to yoga. Not a big deal, though. I did some yoga and physio exercises when I got home. But a class would have been nice.

Moment #2: I took the train to Costco. I shopped, and as always – despite my list – I came out of there with slightly more than originally planned. I could not walk to the train with my Costco bounty, so i called a cab. It’s either I need a car or one of those drawstring cart things that my mom has and that see people of all ages pulling around.

Why, you ask, did I not/can I not drive? Well, there’s a thing called a license, and I don’t have one. Never have. I’ve had my learner’s permit a couple times, but my life has never really needed car. But I want to be able to drive my future children around and be able to go Costco and not have to pay for a cab. I don’t really want to deal with insurance, gas prices, and stupid drivers, but that’s another ball of wax entirely.

And so I recently renewed my learner’s permit and Alison’s bother Kyle is teaching me to drive in his red Pontiac Wave. Sean is not teaching me to drive, because, well, it’s just not happening. Imagine having your significant other try to teach you something like driving. Exactly. Especially since I am learning to drive stick shift because that is what Sean’s VW Golf is.

For the last couple weeks, I’ve slapped my bright red L magnet on the back of Kyle’s car and driven in circles around a parking lot. Driving freaks me out a bit, but apparently I’m doing okay. The gear shift thing is a bit much for me mentally right now, but I think I’m getting the hang of it. There is so much to think about, but I’m finding that I’m enjoying learning to drive.

Dead pedal, clutch, brake, accelerator – I need four feet!

And to go with the gear shifting, and really doing anything in a manual shift car, the clutch. Oh my gosh, the clutch, and the fear of stalling. Kyle very wisely started our first lesson making me stall the car on purpose so I could hear what it sounded like and what to do. And I have only stalled the car accidentally 4 or five times since then, so I’m tremendously proud of that.

My driving teacher
My first, ever, attempt at pulling in to a parking space. Not bad.
First, ever, attempt at backing in to a parking space. Not so good. But I didn’t hit the barricade!

My next lesson is on Thursday. I’ve requested traffic cones for a future lesson so I can practice driving within a “lane” before I am unleashed on the road from the parking lot.

The lazy morning has come to an end – time for baking and laundry, some yoga, and I think we are seeing the new Batman movie tonight. Happy sunny Sunday!

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