Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Driving, New York Style

Not having a car or knowing how to drive one was not a big deal. My father learned late in life because he got transferred to Long Island. "A reverse commute. No traffic," he'd state Yoda-like. Still, he never liked driving, and would say as much with that unique "weight-of-the-world" terminal uniqueness that made it sound like he was preparing to face Goliath and we should never forget what he had to sacrifice in order to put food on the table.

It took me twenty years and three attempts to get my license. Branded in what's left of my 1976 memory is a certain point on 14th Street where my then-driving instructor ordered me to do a U-turn during early morning rush hour. Of course, I stalled the car smack across the dividing line.

So I have become an expert on being a relaxed, happy passenger on the rare road trips I'm coaxed into. Good at changing the radio station, maintaining interesting chatter and never participating in front or back seat driving.

All the while looking for anything that reminds me of home.