Wednesday, September 10, 2008

blog #150 >> Driving the Behemoth

I like little things: Buttons, pebbles, baby booties, mice, things that are small. Therefore it would make sense that I would enjoy driving something small, and I do. I by no means love my current car, but it does get me to where I want to go... most of the time. However, this week my little fuel efficient car is in the shop, the blower on the AC/heater/defroster bit the dust. And until it returns, I'm borrowing THE TRUCK. My parents graciously let me borrow their extra car, (a full-sized truck) until I get my car back. And now I'm a nervous wreak. And I hope I don't wreak it! It's like learning to drive all over again... downtown... in a steamship.

I can't wait to get my car back. Parking the truck is not fun. It's too big to park in the lower parking lot at my apartment because the spots are too small. Just a couple days ago, I had to move my little car because I couldn't open my doors to get out after I squeezed it into one of the spots. And I can't pull out of the upper parking lot with it because the lot is right on an intersection. So parking for me must be on the street. I can't parallel park on my best day and it's even more complicated when you're at least two feet longer and wider than everyone else. Pulling out with it is even worse. There will be no shopping trips for me this week. I don't think I could even get through the driveway at New Seasons with it. Luckily, I can park in the empty church lot a couple blocks up from where I work. So parking there isn't a problem. To add to its difficulties, it's too tall for me to get in and out of while wearing a skirt.

I can't wait to get my car back. Driving the truck is not fun. All the streets are so narrow in Portland, and I can't even make a corner without driving into the other lane or going over the curb. Today I did both several times. I had such a hard time at the round about on Clinton and 36th. I couldn't see until I was in the street and then someone was coming and then while I was waiting for them, someone else came the other way and couldn't get around me. So then I had to go, but couldn't make it around the center island and had to drive over it. It was very embarrassing. I'm just not used to how it handles yet. It's like steering a ship.

I can't wait to get my car back. Stopping the truck is not fun. The truck does not stop like a car. You must break a long time before you actually need to stop. And every time I break, it will lurch forward before the breaks catch and actually start slowing it down. Yellow lights are frightening. There is no stopping or speeding up really. You just have to keep on going. Fortunately, I'm never going very fast. Giant monster trucks are not known for speed or the ability to take off quickly. Today a poor little squirrel ran out in front of me. "Run little squirrel! Run!" I just couldn't break fast enough. He did make it to the other side alive, but just barely.

I can't wait to get my car back. Other people do not think trucks on the road are fun. People are not kind to you when you're driving a truck in the city. They are angry just looking at you. They will not show any mercy or compassion for any reason. They do not like that you are big and taking up over half the road. They do not like that you are slow. They do not like that trucks use more gas and let off more emissions. And other people enjoy showing that dislike in rather aggressive and hateful ways. If you are in a truck, you are the enemy of drivers everywhere. Other drivers will not let you in, will tail gate you, will shout obscenities at you, and will flip you off. Last time I borrowed the truck someone actually left their box of leftovers under the rear tire so I would smash it when I pulled out. Luckily, I caught it and threw it out before I backed up. But really people! Must you be so cruel?!?

I can't wait to get my car back. But I need to remember the benefits to driving a truck this week. a) I can haul stuff if I need to. It would be a good time to take a trip to IKEA, if I hadn't just gone. b) I can tow stuff. I have no idea what I would ever need to tow, but I could if I had to. c) I have four-wheel drive and can go off-roading. Those little unpaved streets that connect neighborhoods in Portland, won't be a problem now. d) I can see above other cars really well. And it doesn't have much of a blind spot. e) It's got an all year State of Oregon Park Pass in the window. If I weren't working this week, I could get out and enjoy nature for free. f) I don't have to take the bus. g) If some rude driver is flipping me off, well then, "Hey, I'm a lot bigger than you!" And I can drive them over and smash their car!

I guess driving the truck won't be so bad after all. I'll just try to stay as much out of everyone's way as possible.



Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry. :( If you need to borrow sofit, jsut let us know. When I was learning to drive a stick i put a sign in the window so people would be nice and know that i was just learing. I got lots of thumbs up and smiles. You could put a sign on your bumper that says, "I'm only borrowing this truck and while my much smaller car is in the shop. Please be nice to me as driving this huge thing makes me nervous too." :)

Theresa Rohrer said...

Tell Sophie thanks for me... but since I haven't driven a stick shift in a long while, that would make me nervous also.
And I was thinking about putting a sticker like that on it yesterday! Maybe I will.

Theresa Rohrer said...

It's already fixed!!! YEAH!!!!