Wednesday, June 25, 2008

It looks like I'm going back to school

I have applied for my New York driving licencse. A local license is useful both as a universal ID and also because without one, car insurance premiums are close to treble.

You might think that having been driving for twenty years, having driven more than 200,000 miles, having never had an accident, (cough) well, not on the road, that getting a license would a a simple procedure. In a word, no.

I went to the DMV and got a provisional licence, or learner's permit. I won't go into huge detail about the DMV, except to say the staff seemed friendly and completely unaware that we visitors would prefer not to stay the whole day. Once I'd had my photo taken, a test was sprung upon me. There were two 16-year-olds, a girl with her older boyfriend and a boy with his mother (and that right there says so much about being 16), plus me and a German man. It was twenty multiple choice questions of which seven were about driving drunk. One of the other questions was:

Road rage is:
a) not an offense in New York
b) illegal, but allowed the first time.
c) understandable if someone cuts you up
d) a serious crime, punishable by 1-3 years in prison.

I managed to pass the test and got my learner's permit. I assumed the next step was a driving test, but reading up on the subject, I discover I first have to pass a five hour course where I will get a certificate that I then take to the test as proof. I'm not sure how much of the course is practical or theory, but seeing as the average charge for the five hours is $50, I assume that it will not be one-to-one tuition. So it looks like I'll be spending a Saturday in a classroom with a bunch of American school-kids.

It's going to be great


  1. That's the second video that is not available. Is it something you are doing or does YouTube not keep them long.

  2. It's working fine for me, does it actually say, "No longer available" or is it just not working?

    Which was the first broken video?