Friday, July 6, 2012

Driving in the UK

One thing a lot of people still ask me about, is how I handle driving on the "wrong" side of the road on the "wrong" side of the card. I know a lot of people have trouble acclimating to driving differently when they move here, they even have a course so people can go practice if they are too nervous to just go out on the road. I was determined not to use that.

Weeks, maybe months, before we arrived I started visualizing myself driving on the left side of the road. I even drove around the neighbourhood in Nebraska on the left side of the road when no one was around.

After we arrived here we got a rental car to get around before we bought one & I had Jer drive first, because he had experience driving in the UK & I had not. I wanted to sit in the passenger seat & observe. Honestly, I don't think I really needed to do that. Once I sat in the driver's seat & started going it felt natural. I beat it into my brain so hard & it didn't feel weird. The only thing that gets me is how tiny the roads are. I have terrible depth perception so in some areas it can feel a little tight, but I know there is enough room on the road for me and the other cars, so reason wins that fight.

In the beginning, Jer would be planning on driving, but then he'd walk to the wrong side of the car. I thought I'd do that, but I have yet to do it. It would feel weird to drive on that side of the car. Jer said that sometimes he would see people sitting in the UK passenger seat playing with their phones and he'd momentarily freak out thinking they were the ones driving, and I had a similar experience! It doesn't phase me when I see adults doing weird things, but I'll see kids, young teens sitting there & freak out thinking they are driving.

All in all, I don't think anyone moving here should worry about the driving. It's easy to acclimate to & if you have a good attitude about it, you'll do fine. I don't understand the women who move here & refuse to drive. Some of the wives of Jer's co-workers don't drive, so they live on base & walk everywhere or catch rides from people when their spouse is deployed.

So basically, they're stuck in one small area, they don't get to go out and explore, unless they have really great friends willing to drive them around the country. I don't know about them, but when Jer deploys I plan on going on small road trips or train rides around to different places with Layla. I'm not going to let him being gone keep us from having a good time & sightseeing. I think others should do the same!!

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