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Monday, November 24, 2014

Driving with a Stranger

My sister found a guy on kijiji that only charges 20$ an hour or 35$ for two hours to help us practice our driving.
Aside from the 10 hour practice drive with the instructor we need to practice what we learned, and how can we do that without a car? The extra lessons cost 65$ an hour at rightlane, by the way, they suck! Don't bother with them! The instructors are friendly, but GOD the office lady named "lynne" is a bitch, so the service is awful.

Back to the subject!

The guy from kijiji was a bit odd, he texted us, asked for our nationalities, and was rough around the edges and rather blunt. In my experience, this is pretty typical Chinese behavior. I know it's generalized and stereotypical, but this is only my opinion. They're pretty straight forward people.

I didn't know what he looked like, as I was dealing with a complete stranger. I told him I wear a headscarf and glasses. He told me he's Chinese and wears glasses too. We decided on a meeting spot at my university, which he also goes to!
He texted me that he will be 5 minutes late, so while I was waiting and looking around I notice this Asian man barge in through the doors in an opened black trench coat, heaving. His hair was wet from the rain and his glasses were fogged up. I won't lie, he did look a bit frightening and I prayed it wouldn't be him, but we made eye contact, then he looked away, walked off and left through the same doors.

I kinda had a feeling it was him, and I texted him that I was there, and he replied that he was outside, to my dismay. I approached him and he seemed friendly when we talked, thank GOD! We walked to his car, and he asked if I wanted to start driving right now. I told him that I didn't feel comfortable doing so, I only took two courses/ hours of driving and that he should first evaluate me in a place that had less people and cars.

Seriously though, remind me again how I'm alive? This is the second time I get in a car with a complete stranger, my Sri Lanki friend is going to FLIP OUT at me, I can't wait to tell her.

So, he took me to Point Pleasant's parking. He's very chatty, very open, pretty friendly, yet a little over friendly seeing that it was my first time meeting him. He got me to turn in the park, then immediately leave it. Then I started driving on the road, then before I knew it I was surrounded by cars, practicing my turns at 4 way cross sections and traffic lights?!

An hour later, I was driving in the pouring rain at night. Even he pointed out that he never taught someone to drive in the dark before, and that he only taught one guy to drive in the rain, but never in the rain at night too!
It made me feel happy, like I accomplished something and earned his acknowledgment of my epic beginners driving....despite him occasionally screaming at me to "STOP STOP STOP", telling me to slow down, or that I'm a bit too close to this and that.
He's pretty leaned back, he even got me to drive myself back home. I also liked that he pointed out the names of the streets I was in, and asked me every once in a while "Do you know where you are?" At which I almost always replied with a "nope!" and sheepish grin. I seriously space out when I'm driving or when I'm outside my comfort zone. I completely dissociate in some sense that my body is doing its thing without my brain. It can be rather dangerous. I notice that I do this when I'm doing a presentation, or when I'm grading for karate, or when I'm under a spotlight, or apparently driving!

Anyways, the deal was 35, and even though I told him other people will charge 40 or 60, he told me since it's my first time, he will only ask for 30$
That's 15 and hour, I kinda feel bad. I asked a few times if he's sure, but he held his ground.
Maybe it's because he knows my sister and I will both be taking his lessons from now on, that he feels like he guaranteed himself at least 200$ just from us if not more.

I definitely recommend him. He's cheap, he's pretty good, he's not the best, but he would tell me where to stop, what I'm doing wrong and explain to me why I should and shouldn't be doing something.

You can find him in kijiji, I don't want to give out too much detail so I won't invade his privacy, however, if you're looking for extra practice hours and don't have a car, or a friend with a car then tell me and I will give you his contact information.


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