Sunday, April 17, 2011

Driving a Truck and Other Intimidations

Are you a prissy girl who is intimidated by “manly” things?  I am.  Use power tools?  I might slice off a finger on a table saw!  Drive the riding lawn mower?  I could tip it on our hilly yard and trap my leg, requiring an amputation!  No thanks.

It’s not that I’m not a quick learner – I am.  It’s just that things that I’ve never done before make me nervous because I’m afraid of messing something up.  Really it’s not just “manly” things, but ANY things that I have no experience at, especially when I don’t have an expert alongside to coach me through.

I have many DIY projects lined up that will force me to push past my OH-MY-GOSH-I-HAVE-NO-IDEA-WHAT-I’M-DOING-SO-I-HOPE-I-DON’T-MESS-THIS-UP-BECAUSE-THEN-WHAT-WILL-I-DO syndrome.  But I will do much online research first and use techniques recommended by those who have tried several methods and found what works.

However, recently I was forced into something that I wasn’t quite ready for – driving a truck.

Yeah, yeah, many of you either have large vehicles yourselves or have driven them many times.  But I haven’t.  I’ve been a passenger in a large vehicle many times (including a semi-truck when I was little), but I’ve never been the driver.

We needed to borrow my father-in-law’s truck for my mom’s move last week.  The only time to pick it up was when The Mr. was on his way to a music gig, which meant that he would drop me off at the in-law’s house and I would drive the truck home.  Uh-oh.  And I had to start by backing it down the not-straight driveway.  Double uh-oh.

Even just getting into the truck was a challenge.  First I had to get past Rudy the guard dog. 

He’s friendly but his "Puppy Power" can be a bit much for a prissy girl like me.  Thank goodness for play toys that you can throw hard in one direction while you walk quickly in the other!  Of course, once I made it back to the truck, I had to hoist myself inside, so that was the second challenge, since I’m a shorty.

Backing it out the not-straight driveway went fine, as did the drive back to my house on the windy country roads.  I even managed to parallel park it nicely in our driveway turnaround so that it wasn’t in the way of anyone else pulling in or out. I was so proud of my little prissy self.

Once I felt a little more comfortable in the big truck, driving it around town was no biggie until I had to stop by the mall to return something on the way to my mom’s on day 2 of her move.  Other trucks and large vehicles were parked alongside the regular cars, but I wasn't about to just cross my fingers that I didn't scrape another car as I tried to guide the truck into a spot.  Dagnabit -- I had to pass up two really good parking spots, including one at the very front.  But with my tail between my legs, I ventured out to BFE, or Scooby Doo 2 as I like to call it where nobody else was parked.  Boo.  My parking limitations probably doubled the time of my "quick" mall stop.

Side note:  Did you notice that I fit TWO Scooby references in one post?  Jinkies!  Now back to our regularly scheduled program.

After a couple days, I was feeling powerful riding up so high.  In fact, I was feeling so good about my friend the truck that I decided to use it to pick up bulk mulch for our landscaping before I returned the truck to its owner the following night.  (But more on that later.)

Now that I have conquered my fear of driving a big truck, I feel empowered to try some other things.  Who knows – maybe I’ll even cave and start cutting the grass for Jason in the near future.  Or maybe not.  I can be a bit clumsy, so there's still that chance of tipping the riding mower on one of the steep hills in our yard.

What fears or intimidations have you conquered?  Or what are you still dreading?  I shared mine, so you can share yours!


  1. Great picture of the Guard Dog!!

  2. You talked about helping your mother move into a condo. You must be a really wonderful daughter.


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