I’ve been driving badly. If you see me coming, mine’s a silver VW Passat, look out. The power steering in my ten year old wagon imploded several months back. Ever since, it’s been as responsive as driving a tank with a joy stick. One handed.
This week outside the Med Market a blond woman and her daughter looked at me trying to manoeuvre my auto-sans-steering. Incredulous. I thought it best if I explained myself. So I completed my 58 point turn. I should point out, that I basically cannot turn unless in motion. Hence parking is a full upper body workout. I finally drove forward, having broken into a mild sweat and rolled down the window.
Before I could say, ‘sorry mate-ess the power steering’s shot, she’s a beast to TURN.’
The woman burst out laughing and said, ‘I said to her (points to daughter) she’s going to hit that car. Just watch her! ’
I laughed at her accurate response and explained the reason why I looked like a Nana with my boobs trapped in the steering wheel. Then drove off to do some more insane parking at Fresh Choice.
The Mums in the primary school drop-off have probably already *555’d (the police Roadwatch number to text if you see BAD Driving or Traffic Incidents in NZ) me. After witnessing my pathetic attempts at parallel parking. I reverse. But I cannot turn. Much. I try again. My arms bulge. My chest muscles flex. I pant. Well, you try moving your car wheels with your car turned off. This is pretty much my steering scenario. Then I give up. And double park.
For someone who has always prided themselves on their ‘first try, parked perfectly parallel parks’ this is a hard nut to grind. All those wusses who want only angle parks – I’ve laughed at you. Ever since I passed my driver’s test aged 15, in a racing green Mini, with a grumpy long legged copper in Waipawa, Hawkes Bay, I’ve been an expert. Well, until now. The shame.
To say, my VW is overdue for a warrant is a slight understatement. Well I have been away for most of the summer, Officer. It’s only, date-due 13 October, 2013. And I have tried. Honestly. Thankfully for all you other motorists out there, my steerage problem caused me to not pass muster this week. At 196,000kms I really need a new car. Things are continually dying. A new camshaft is also on the, to replace list. I was going to flick it off. As is. But no. Parts are winging their way from the homeland of Volkswagen, Germany, as I write. It will soon be road worthy. Never fear.
Back in my childfree days when I drove a VW Beetle (a 1302s for you Dubbie aficionados) I had a much loved mechanic in Stanley Street who overlooked the rust creeping into my white bubble-o-youth-and-freedom’s doors and floor pan. I’ve forgotten his name, but bless that man who supplied those rubber Warrant stamps every six months. Up until I sold my souped-up-heady-mufflered-dreamboat for $2,500 cash and bought the safe and sensible family wagon.
In the meantime, I’m not safe. So look out. Especially in car parks. Chances are you’ll be in MY way.
It’s a long way away from Germany to Queenstown.
Safe motoring folks.