Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    19
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Long-time biker, will have to start driving soon... =(

    As a 23 year old recent college graduate, I have yet to get a driver's license. Growing up I lived in a rather crazy city in a developing nation, and had no desire to have to deal with a rather aggressive drving culture. I did obtain my permit, but did little more than drive around the neighborhood twice.
    I went to college in Chicago and had no use for a car, nor could afford it. Rides in cars were given by friends when needed. Although I have enjoyed biking since I was a kid, my last two years of college saw me fall in love with biking in a way that I am sure most of you here would understand, and that many unfamiliar with bikes wouldn't. I now bike to work, run most errands/shop on a bike, and would rather be out on the bike while friends sit and play Nintendo Wii at their batchelor pad.
    The one problem with not having a license is simply that there are cases when it would be handy (makes sense, no?). I have no intentions of owning a car anytime soon, but I know that being able to drive is pretty much a life skill that everyone should probably have. A few months ago I got another permit (as my other one was expired, and foreign), but once again have not gotten in more than a few hours behind the wheel.
    I will be taking a road trip half way across the country in little less than a month. On other road trips I have done double duty as co-pilot instead of taking shifts as a driver, but this time there might just be two of us, which presents some what of a problem. It would be a lot of driving for just one person!
    I am genuinely freaked out about having to drive. The idea of being five feet wide is terrifying. The thought of getting into an accident sends shivers down my spine. As a biker, I think to myself "I wouldn't want me out there driving a car".
    Has anyone here successfully learned to drive as an adult? My low confidence aside (I can work on that), is it possible to learn decent highway driving skills in a matter of a few weeks? Believe me, I don't want to put myself or anyone else in danger, but if learning to drive can be done in a short time, I'll do my best to get there.
    Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Dancing in Lansing
    Posts
    20,458
    Mentioned
    5 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I guess it's kind of ironic that you're asking for advice on learning how to drive on a carfree forum!

    I know that my mom learned how to drive when she was older. She never got to like it or to feel very comfortable with it. And I don't think you'll feel comfortable either, from the sounds of it, at least not in time for your trip. Of course, highway driving is the easiest kind of driving, so you'll probably do OK if it comes down to it.

    If you really don't feel right about driving, maybe you should talk it over with your travel buddy. He/she might not feel so comfortable about your driving either! Instead of you driving, maybe you could take an extra day on the trip so one person could do all the driving.

    Whatever you decide, I don't think that driving is a life skill that you "must" develop. It's up to you. Some people lead long and productive lives and never drive even once. Driving is like knitting or speaking French--a nice skill to have, but not essential to the good life. Albert Einstein, for example, never learned to drive, although he could ride a bike with great abandon.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  3. #3
    the bike made me do it oneredstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Paris, of the prairies
    Posts
    528
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Too bad on your current situation. If you do decide to do some of the driving on this trip, at least it will be on the highway. I always found that highway driving was far less stressful then driving in the city. Sure the speeds are higher, but there is a lot less stopping and starting.

    Good luck in whatever decision you make. If you do end up driving I would be interested to get an update from you and see how you feel about it after the fact.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    19
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    A quick update here. I didn't end up driving since the car we borrowed was manual, and have no experience driving manual, much less automatic. With no plans for road trips any time soon, learning to drive is on the back burner again.

  5. #5
    Senior Member acroy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Dallas Suburbpopolis
    Posts
    1,481
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    driving's no biggie, just like any other skill, don't wigg out about it, take it easy, learn your limits...
    I drive as little as possible but it is sure handy to be able to do so when I wanna!
    beer-bottle target

  6. #6
    Instigator at best kjohnnytarr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Columbia, Missouri
    My Bikes
    Motobecane Jury
    Posts
    1,086
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    On your trip, get your friend to do the city stuff, and you take the highway miles. You'll do fine.
    Quote Originally Posted by JoshFrank View Post
    (By icing I mean puke and by cake I mean Lexus)
    Bikes: Flannigan, Finn Mac, Tim Finnegan, Nicholai Ivanich
    Words: Going Underground, Pedicabs After Dark, Thanksgiving Via The KATY Trail

  7. #7
    Senior Member Buglady's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Calgary
    My Bikes
    2013 MEC Col Ltd. road bike; 2012 MEC Silhouette hybrid; 2001 Specialized Allez (too small); 1984 Raleigh 5-speed city bike; 1985 Boyes-Rosser tourer; 1976 Raleigh Twenty folding bike; 1988 (?) Kuwahara "Blaze" mountain bike
    Posts
    2,282
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by bondiblue
    A quick update here. I didn't end up driving since the car we borrowed was manual, and have no experience driving manual, much less automatic. With no plans for road trips any time soon, learning to drive is on the back burner again.
    Ech, I hate manual transmissions. I canNOT get the hang of them! However, I just wanted to reassure you on the "learning to drive as an adult" thing. I didn't even get my learner's permit until I was 26, full license at 29. I don't particularly enjoy driving - I actively hate city driving - but I am competent, probably more so than if I had learned as a teenager.

    Since you have been biking for transportation, you do have experience with traffic and with the rules of the road, and that is the hardest part of learning to drive a car. The rest is just practice and muscle memory. Get a friend to take you out on some secondary streets or an empty parking lot, and you'll be fine. And just because you get a driver's license, that doesn't mean you "have" to drive - just that you could if you needed to.

  8. #8
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    La Petite Roche
    Posts
    12,233
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    As you said, driving is a necessary life skill.

    Don't worry about the cross country drive. My Mom and I did one when I was 16 and had only had my license for a few months. That kind of driving is relatively easy. Just pull over if you get tired.

    Just remember to brake with your feet!

  9. #9
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Toronto (again) Ontario, Canada
    My Bikes
    Norco Bushpilot (out of commission), Raleigh Delta
    Posts
    6,944
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Buglady
    Ech, I hate manual transmissions. I canNOT get the hang of them! However, I just wanted to reassure you on the "learning to drive as an adult" thing. I didn't even get my learner's permit until I was 26, full license at 29. I don't particularly enjoy driving - I actively hate city driving - but I am competent, probably more so than if I had learned as a teenager.
    Ah, the standard transmission, it's not the transmission that people have trouble with, it's the clutch, and that needs practise, some people can learn it in a day, some people take weeks or months to learn it. The shifting part is easy, and any idiot can learn that in about 5 minutes.....

  10. #10
    Senior Member megavovan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Houston, TX
    My Bikes
    Cheap $100 Walmart mtn bike full suspension
    Posts
    164
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I don't understand why everyone says "LOL GO HWY MILEZ ITS EZ!!111!"

    I recommend you do lots of city driving, until you are comfortable. I am a hair short of 19 and been driving for about 9 months now. I did not go on highway for 2 or 3 months, I mastered my city/street riding.

    Then I took whacks at highways, first easy empty highways outside city, then inside.

    But then again, I live in 4th largest city in the nation, and highways are always clogged.
    Quote Originally Posted by _beaver_
    ...if i am cruising along on the road about 20 or so & some roadie on his bike zips by me real close while looking at me with a smirk.... race is on!!

  11. #11
    The Guadfather Lecterman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Fart Worth
    My Bikes
    Trek, Centurion, Kuwahara coming soon
    Posts
    1,090
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It helps to know how to drive.

    I mean, how else are you supposed to get away from the monsters in the movies....if the car starts
    Are you a registered member? Why not? click here to register. Its free, and only takes 27 seconds!
    Help out the forums, abide by our community guidelines.
    "Minor bun engine, made Benny Lava!!!"

  12. #12
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Dancing in Lansing
    Posts
    20,458
    Mentioned
    5 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by bondiblue
    A quick update here. I didn't end up driving since the car we borrowed was manual, and have no experience driving manual, much less automatic. With no plans for road trips any time soon, learning to drive is on the back burner again.
    Whew!!

    Don't listen to all the geeks here. You do not have to learn how to drive. It will soon be a vanished art, like using an abacus.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •