Monday 4 June 2012 - Driving test
On Thursday I decided it was about time to take the driving test - I had another 4 weeks in which I had to take it. An appointment was available for the Monday so I took it. Turned up 10 minutes early and was processed quickly and told to wait in one of three marked bays. There seemed to be two testers and my 11:30 appointment was more like 11:45 - I was fully expecting it to be late so this wasn't bad.
First she asked for each of the turn signals, brakes, horn, windscreen wipers and emergency brake to be tested while she walked around the car. We then backed out of the space, drove around the test center building in its car park, then pulled onto the road. It sits at the end of a circle so naturally I tended to the right rather than drive straight across, but got an instant reprimand saying "California drivers don't drive like that"!
Then was a right turn, easy enough, except I hadn't noticed a pedestrian crossing the road from the far side, walking through cars stopped at the traffic lights, and wandering across my lane right in front of me. The examiner shouted at the same time as I braked but that was reprimand number two and I assumed a failure. Nevertheless she told to drive on where we did regular turns, reversing in a straight line, and nothing particularly taxing really.
Oh, there was one other thing - we were driving down a hill and traffic lights turned amber against me. Do I stop or continue? I'd only just checked in my mirrors again so I knew there was nothing behind me. So I stopped, but it was heavy braking. I explained my reasoning (about the only thing I actually said during the test apart from acknowledgements of instructions) but she said nothing.
Back at the center I got another reprimand about the pedestrian incident. She handed over a piece of paper but I couldn't immediately see what the result was. But it seemed to be a pass, however, I checked anyway - "Did you pass me?" - "No, you passed yourself". Phew!
Physical card in the mail 2-4 weeks from now.
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My attempt to get an EB1a visa for the US, a person of extraordinary ability, which gives a green card pretty much immediately, and there is no waiting period unlike most other visas.
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