When I’m wrong, I’m wrong. And I will admit it.
Remember when I successfully started driving a manual transmission on my own? I certainly do, because those memories were built on the excruciating process of actually learning, mastering and psychologically accepting the idea using my own hand/foot to control the vehicle. I’ve never been a fan of driving in any sense, I’m more the passenger type, so this was an incredible feat for me. But it says nothing about my personal character though, because I learned this skill for purely utilitarian reasons. I had to get places. Faster than my feet could carry me. I dodged the bullet in Holland because I had a bike and a good friend (thanks Sherry!) to enable my fear of driving and pick me up most of the time. But in Germany I had to bite the bullet (maybe that should be the name of the chapter of our life in Germany if I ever write a memoir) and drive that shit-buggy, as Dave would say.
I drove the shit-buggy, but I made sure to hate every minute of it. I made sure to never drive when the choice was there for someone else to do it. I was sure to build it up and dread it if I ever had to go on the highway. I’m dramatic like that. All the while, my daily companion Hilary chimed in sweetly, “I used to hate it too, but now it’s actually fun.” Wie bitte? I don’t think so! I believed her, but I knew that by nature Hilary is a more adventurous and less scardey-cat-like than I ever would be. Congratulations to her, for finding this torturous means of transport exhilarating, but I just don’t get it.
And yet now, after spending the season driving the winding, hilly roads of the Chau and spending the summer using my sister’s whippy manual-transmission Civic, I’m sad to leave the stick shift behind. Yes, Hilary, you were right. It’s fun sometimes. Especially on a windy two-lane highway. Not so much in traffic on at a stop light on a hill. But in general, as a principle, I like it. A lot.
There, I said it.