Can we just walk?

Well I drove in Switzerland yesterday. All I can say, is that if I have ever harmed anyone in my life, just know that I was paid back yesterday. We bought a Tom Tom in the States before coming to Europe and that was a good purchase. I am not a tech person and I am usually annoyed when Brandon buys these things, but this item is priceless. It talks you through everywhere...even steep mountain roads with room enough for one car filled with a terrified mother and two unsure children in the back. It will even talk you right up the steep, one lane road, tell you to turn right, just to find a beautiful planter filled with flowers. NO place to turn right. Brandon told me I would know that I was in reverse if the car was beeping. No beeping happening, just rolling backwards with sweating palms. From the back seat, "are you crying mommy?" No, but I should be. Well, now heading up another steep road...I kill the car. The mother pushing a stroller up the road looks frightened. She should be. We make it through...I even make way for another car. At this point Jaylee says, "can we just walk?" I wish. We make it to the motorway and now I am feeling much better. From the backseat, "daddy does better with that lady"...she is referring to the TomTom voice.
I love John Mayer and the fact that I could still hear him after that winding, steep, devilish road meant that I was still alive. Thank you God! Now, I have no idea what 100km is, but everyone was still passing me at this, so I step it up to 120km and even the UPS man passes me. I don't care. Now I'm off the motorway and on some little country road where I encounter a bridge. Not good. Now I've almost run into the back of the man in front of me. He, apparently knew to stop and let the other car coming straight for us to pass. Needless to say, we finally make it to the Swiss Vapeur Parc and I have to park the car. Out of plain frustration, I hit the gear shift. It goes down a bit. My moment of clarity. Push the gear down and then it goes into to reverse!
I am not sure why I never properly learned how to drive a stick shift, but now I must give credit where credit is due. This one is for all the P-town folk...thank you JPat Tom for teaching me to drive your diesel truck. However, flat the Pleasanton roads may have been at least I had some exposure. Unfortunately, you can't kill a diesel truck...you can kill a little VW on a steep mountain...a few times. Also, I must thank Pretty. In college he was that guy with the Jeep. It too was a stick shift, but really the most practice on a hill I got was the parking lot of UNR or the occasional DD and nobody cared how bad I drove. The moral of the story is that it is my parents fault. Isn't it always? You spoiled me with great cars...none of which had a gear shift.

A few things I learned today:
  • I am a better driver than I once thought.
  • My kids know when I'm stressed.
  • Sweaty palms and a nervous tummy feel pretty good once you've gotten through the mess that caused them in the first place.
  • If the car is making a lot of noise, shift gears. Anyone can learn to drive a stick shift...the car will teach you.

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