Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I failed.

My driving test, that is. But I can safely say that it wasn't my fault.

The entire thing was a mixed bag -- I failed the slope test (part of the circuit test), but passed the road test. It's funny, since most people say road is the hard one, the one where you have to bribe the JPJ officer. I didn't, just so you know. Don't have the money, anyway.

I got there at 10.45 a.m. and finally went back at almost 5.00 p.m. One whole day wasted, and I failed anyway, how piss-offing. It was good to see that quite a number of other people there failed as well, and FOR THE SAME REASON.

The circuit test was the first part, and we went one by one. In the circuit, you do the slope first, followed by side parking and then the three-point turn. I've always had problems with the slope (the first part of the entire test, what luck) because, as my driving instructor says, I takut tekan minyak (am afraid of pressing the accelerator). It's my balancing, it took me a while to get that right. You know, ease off the clutch, step on the accelerator. Anyway, I was hella nervous.
Photo from That's the SDC slope, btw.

It came to my turn, and my car was an old model Kancil that I didn't even know SDC possessed -- I'd only ever seen new models on the circuit. So, okay, fine, never mind that it was an old model Kancil that seemed to have perpetual minor epileptic fits. I got in, saying a quick prayer. Oh, the handbrake wouldn't go down all the way. But the car was moving! Oh well, maybe that's how the old models were. What did I know, right? Hey, it made that awful grinding sound as I put it into gear even though I was stepping on the clutch as hard as I could. But, well, it was in gear. They shouldn't penalise me for being noisy, surely. Off I went.

I stopped on the yellow line, pulling the handbrake all the way up. I gave the JPJ guy my name and test number and he nodded, signaling for me to get on with it. Determinedly, I stomped on the clutch, put the car into gear (there was that awful grinding sound again), and slowly eased off the clutch. The whole damn car was vibrating anyway, so I couldn't tell when to press the accelerator. Better early than late, I figured, and revved the engine. I then attempted to release the handbrake...but that's all it was: an attempt.

The effing handbrake was stuck.

I tugged, I yanked, I jiggled, but to no avail. In the meantime, my right foot was going crazy, revving the engine like mad and majorly contributing to the already awful air pollution. I knew people were staring at me as I panicked during my epic battle with the handbrake, but that was honestly the least of my concerns. Finally, I let go of the wheel and frantically yanked at the handbrake with both hands. This happened a few times before the button finally slipped...and so did the car. Backwards. Fed-up JPJ guy signaled that I'd failed.

After a whole day there, I remain an L license holder. FML.

A surprisingly large number of people also failed because of the cars. To my knowledge, there was one car with a faulty handbrake, and another one with clutch issues. We had to wait two hours to take the road test; those who failed started chatting and bitching about the lousy cars to one another. I met a girl who had the misfortune of getting the same car as I.

For the road test, we were given the new Kancils, faultless new models. For the road test, I was fine. I think the JPJ guy was trying to psych me out, telling me about the number of accidents they'd had that day and rushing me at parts, but gave up after seeing I wasn't about to let him get to me. He talked to me all throughout, so I just talked back. It's easy to ramble when you're nervous, but it couldn't be any old rambling -- I figured I had to watch my words with a JPJ officer. The whole time, I was scared he was trying to buddy-buddy me into giving him a bribe.

He wasn't, however; really, he was quite nice. He passed me with a 17/20, yay! Also, my car did not once die, which I am so proud of. (It died three times during my pre-test.)

I'm retaking the circuit test on the 12th -- that's another Monday I'm missing school. Wish me luck! SDC, PLEASE give us new model, non-faulty models.

Once I pass this, I'll be driving my parents' automatic cars. No more clutch and/or gear worries! Can't wait.

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