Why I Respect the California Driver’s License
As I might have mentioned before, I actually hail from the amazing state of North Carolina. Having lived there since I was nine, I went to all of middle and high school there, and learned to drive there. Learning to drive was actually a pretty nerve-wracking experience for me. I’ve never been one for adrenaline, and the prospect of doing 70+mph on a highway seemed like a one-way ticket to the hospital to me. The thing I never realized was…I had it easy. Like really easy. Moving to California for college made me realize how silly I was for thinking driving in North Carolina was scary. Just riding with friends along the California roads was enough to have me wishing to be home again.
In North Carolina, we have hills. Small, fairly gently sloping hills that make you feel comfortable and in control.
In California, people drive up and down frikin’ mountains. At 80mph. In heavy traffic. I rode with a few friends to Half-Moon Bay my freshman year and experienced the roller coaster of nausea and terror that was the Skyline Boulevard/Kings Mountain Road “shortcut” to the beach. Nothing I’ve done in North Carolina even comes close to that experience. California has mountains aplenty, and the brave drivers of California have to deal with them throughout their lives, from whenever they start learning to the fateful day they opt for public transport because they don’t like taking the risk of falling off the side of a mountain.
So I salute you, people who learned to drive in Cali. You’ve put in far more work to learn than someone like me, and I’m honored to have you guys drive me around your beautiful state. And if you learned to drive a stick shift in the mountains, than you might as well be whichever Grecian god that would have created motor vehicles (Hephaestus maybe?). Either way, you’ve overcome a lot to be able to take people and things places like half-moon bay. Kudos to you.
As for me, I feel like I’ll stay car-less for a little longer. I still don’t know if I’ll be in Cali after I leave college, but that’s a decision for a year or two down the road. For now, I think I’ll stick to either public transport, having generous friends, or just staying local (stay-cations, anyone?). Consider it my way of helping the environment.