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Posts Tagged ‘driving’

Texting Google

Not a recommended roadway.

Not a recommended roadway.

When a person is driving not knowing exactly where they are going, say to a Costco, they may look for directions. If they don’t have a fancy smartphone nor do they desire to stop they may resort to texting Google for directions (466453).

If someone texts something like “seattle costco” they will get back a list of the three nearest Costco stores with their addresses. This will eventually lead them to the right store for some wholesome bulk shopping.

However Google will not inform the inquirer a critical piece of information such as a Seahawk game is about to start between the person asking and the store.

In the end I do not recommend driving near a large sporting arena anytime there is a sporting event in that arena.

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Driving Stress

I just like taking photos of flowers, maybe I should just save for a dedicated macro lens.

I just like taking photos of flowers, maybe I should just save for a dedicated macro lens.

I realized today where a large portion of stress and concern related to young drivers come from: they are often driving their parents car.

Today while driving my car and still getting used to the clutch (only killed it twice today!) my Mom was rather relaxed about it. Compared to when I was initially learning to drive a few years ago and when my brother learned it was a large departure from her normal teaching-to-drive behavior. Then it dawned on me, any damage I do would only be down to my car.

While the odometer only registers 87k while learning how to use a manual transmission must have put a few more miles of wear then is actually registered. Also I washed it today and noticed the sad fact that many of the dirt spots are not so much spots as features of the paint.

Worse case scenario: a $1000 experiment in learning to drive a clutch.

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Driving

 

Some places are particularly flat.

Some places are particularly flat.

Driving up Highway 5 in the middle of California we found only two types of radio stations: country or hispanic. They alternated fairly evenly throughout the entire FM band. Then at the bottom of the band there was an oddity – Dane Cooke.

As it was something different we started to listen. He started to swear on the radio. Odd, we thought, doesn’t the FCC have something to say about curses on the radio?

So we kept driving, well driving at that point was a very loose term, we kept sitting in random traffic. Eventually the traffic yielded to actual movement that came up to near the speed limit, the speed limit of a school zone anyway.

The radio cut out. Dane Cooke was replaced with fast tempo mariachi music. Again, odd.

Continuing forward we hit another (of many) spot of traffic, Dane Cooke came back. Three seconds later we figured it out: someone’s iPod FM transmitter. The SUV in front of us had a nice bubble of comedy. We tried to stay within that bubble to hear the end of the joke, we ended up tailgating until they pulled aside and let us pass.

We never will know how the joke ended.

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Thanksgiving Traffic

 

Some bikes are unloved.

Some bikes are unloved.

I had a theory. I though that if instead of taking Highway 101 from Santa Barbara to my house in Sonoma County that it might be faster to go up to Sacramento and cut over and this avoid the traffic of Marin.

Well I was wrong.

The traffic that I normally encounter when going home for Thanksgiving (by bumming rides off of friends) is normally intense in Marine due to everyone going north. There are also exits, merging freeways and bridge like things.

Today the traffic had no discernable cause. We were on Highway 5. In the middle of Nowhere, California. Nothing in any direction, no traffic accidents, no off ramps, no buildings not even any cows. Not a single feature to look at aside from road and traffic. Yet there was traffic.

Stopped.

Unmoving.

Traffic.

The drive normally takes (Santa Barbara to Sacramento) six hours or so. At hour seven and a half we could see the off ramp leading to my friends house. The front right tire blew out.

We pulled over and he fixed it while I held my flashlight to illuminate his handiwork. Once we arrived at his house I was then picked up by a family member and taken the rest of the way home. Ten hours.

Ten hours is roughly three more hours then I prefer to be in the car when driving to and from school. But then again Thanksgiving Eve has the heaviest traffic of the year. Or at least of the year when I am on the road.

Seriously though, traffic on Highway 5?

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Drivers Test

A Road. A Road.

A Road. A Road.

Yesterday I took my GRE, today I tackled another test that has been waiting for the past four years: my driver’s license. Like most people I got my drivers permit around my sixteenth birthday. And then it expired on its own, so I got it again. That one expired. Finally I got my third drivers permit for last time. Then that one expired. Eventually I came to my current permit, I don’t remember which one it is, but there have been a few of them.

About a week or so ago I decided I should make an appointment for my behind the wheel driver exam. So I checked the DMV website, an online appointment system existed. I checked the first appointment before I went back to school. The local DMV was fully booked. I tried the next closest, same thing. I went a county south and it was also fully booked. This was not looking good. So I called their phone system to see if maybe there was an error on the online system. After waiting on hold I was told that, no they are indeed fully booked. I asked where the nearest appointment was, it was a week and a half and about an hour drive away. Ah well it was an exam.

Today I was taken over there for the test. Fortunately the DMV is in a flat area, I could not imagine taking the test in San Francisco. As required by the DMV I took my exam about forty minutes after my scheduled time. Suffice to say I was fairly nervous waiting for the examiner to come out. Luckily for me my examiner was not extremely alert and fastidious. He starting texting someone while I was driving around. Aside from the two pedestrians I hit and that tree that jumped in my way I managed to pass.

To be honest I am still a bit shocked that I managed to pass the exam given my confidence in driving. Now that I have my drivers license (or will have one mailed soon) I can go back to not driving and riding my bicycle when needed. Not that I would have a car to drive if I wanted to.

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Driving

Keep Driving

Keep Driving

Like many people my age (twenty by the way) I have yet acquire my drivers license. So for the past few summers I have been getting my license. Every summer I start off with the arduous goal of practicing all summer and getting it by the end. Since habit is hard to break I have been doing the same this summer.

Except now I feel I am actually ready to take the test. I thought I heard somewhere that you need to make an appointment a bit before hand, so I checked the website. Both of the local DMV’s were completely booked. So I checked another sort of nearby. It was booked until September 26th. I go back to Santa Barbara on the 19th.

It is a DMV website, I assumed that it is not that up to date so I called to get an appointment. After some pleasant elevator music I found out something I did not want to hear. They were actually all booked to the end of September. I asked for the nearest available appointment – Fairfield. About sixty miles away.

I suppose if I fail I can try again on Winter break, then Spring break and then summer again. It is not like I need my drivers license, I just cleaned and tuned my bike.

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