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That time I had to rely on my skills to get a driving license


I had driving test yesterday to get my Japanese driving license.

Some things you should know about me:
- I don't drive. Got my license two years ago without even taking the test in my country during spring holiday. And I was living in Japan too. (so I don't really get to drive much. and didn't want to)
- I don't in particular like driving. I suck. The roads back home are too scary. I can't park the car. Can never park the car without my dad's instructions.
- I practiced driving a little with my dad and boyfriend back when I was on holiday in Jakarta, but still...suck. lol.

I mean....LOL. There must a be a miracle for me to pass the driving test.

The process is long. I applied for this and passed the written test in February, but I could only booked the driving test a month later. Damn. But that gives me time to do other things.....such as practicing for the test.
I took 2 x 2 hours driving practice in Saitama. A week before the test and a day before the test. Paid 32,400 yen for that (this was the CHEAPEST practice lesson I found. Other places were 50,000 yen and up) And I'm glad I took it. I really really needed that. I totally sucked in my first two hours. But I started to get a hang of it a day before the test!

So...yesterday I had to go to the exam center in Fuchu because the one in Samezu is still under renovation. Quite far and expensive from my house. Well, only had to change train once in Shinjuku and then use the bus from Musashi-koganei...but still, far. The test was scheduled at 8:30 am. I had to sleep early and wake up early just for that day.
I arrived at the gate at 7:45 and people were already queuing to get inside the building! It opened at around 8 am.

We had to wait again after paying for the test fee until 9 am for the police to come explain about the test. One police officer explained that test will be conducted in Japanese and there are 3 courses, those who pass the test will get pink slip (which he said symbolizes spring and sakura?) while those who fail will get white slip, etc. He then told us that we can see Mt.Fuji from the window on the third floor because it's sunny that day. He also told us that they the policemen don't get paid much so they cannot return your bag or money if you leave it on the third floor and it gets stolen or lost. Oh, also that the cute mascot of the police department is based on his face (???? but he then said just kidding). LOL

After that another police officer started calling our names and we had to stand in line before going downstairs. There were in total 20 people doing the driving test that morning. We were divided into 2 groups. I was in group 2, and the LAST to do the test. How lucky.

We were taken to a classroom where they explained about the test further (about how the test will be conducted in Japanese and the police will only use simple Japanese so those who don't understand Japanese much should remember simple directions like left and right in Japanese), before we would go down to the driving course to take the test. We then waited in the waiting room while number 1 and 2 from each groups got into the cars and began the test. The test is structured so that while number 1 takes the test, number 2 sits in the back of the car.

And you know what, the examiner for group 2 was an old police officer! And a young one for group 1. When I saw that from the waiting room, I was like. THANK GOD. This was what my friend told me: the old one is usually more kind and generous!
While waiting, I just chatted with the other test takers. They also had prepared for the test by taking driving practices. The Americans I spoke to even had the practice at this driving course we're gonna use for the test! So lucky. But anyway those are more expensive than the one I took of course, hahah. I don't have that much money.

My turn to get into the car came after a long time waiting....
As I was the last one, I had to sit in the back of the car while number 9 was driving (I could observe her first!), but no one sat in the back of the car while I was driving. It was only me and the police officer. Yeah.

Number 9 and I got Course B. She passed the test! And then it was my turn. I was super paranoid when I drove, I think. I tried really hard to show that I drive very carefully (because it's one of the most important things in the test!!). It went...fine I guess. Passed through the crank just fine! The S-curve was harder than the one I practiced... But the police was very nice. He guided me throughout the S-curve! I ended up not bumping into anything and exited the curve smoothly.

I was the last one to finish the test. There were no other cars when I started driving down the course.
And...........he told me I passed.
I was like flkgjsdflgjdkglfigjfdlg thank you thank you this is actually my last chance because I have to move to Yokohama and shit after this so I can't take the test again in Tokyo if I fail etc etc. He's very nice!
He then said that women always drive better than men, because men tend to speed up and ignore safety check. He said it's good to drive very carefully. LOL.
I left with the pink slip and went to the third floor again.

IMG_0279esiphoens.jpg

Out of 20 people taking the test that morning, only 8 people passed the test! I feel so lucky.
I ate and chatted with the other two people who passed the test while waiting for the driving license to be issued.
At almost around 2:30 pm we finally got our licenses! What a long day! But I also made new friends on that day so the waiting wasn't so boring. Celebrated it with eating chocolate parfait at a family restaurant afterwards with one of my new friends. XD

KFBU7819es.jpg

I have a Japanese driving license now. I'm allowed to drive in Japan. I can rent a car and drive to wherever I want to go. I can drive my parents and friends around.
I can't believe someone like me passed that test on the first try.
Many aren't as lucky as me. People in the waiting room kept talking about how their friends took the test 3-9 times...
And that the passing rate is the lowest in this Fuchu test center. (Samezu is said to be easier)

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Author:♥vachuu♥
I speak nonsense.
英語は母国語ではないけど英語を使うのが好きな人。

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