I’m really not fond of driving. To be precise, I’m not keen on driving in London or on the motorways. I’d go so far as to say I have a mild phobia about it. The thought of driving through the Marble Arch roundabout is enough to make me glassy eyed and sweaty.

Adelaide, the South Australian city where I used to live, doesn’t have all that much going for it (except my lovely family and friends, I hasten to add before they unleash howls of protest). But to me it’s a driver’s dream. It’s on a grid, I always know where I’m going and the ‘nightmare’ roundabout that causes regular controversy in the local press has 2 lanes and 5 exits. Nothing like what we have to deal with here.

B and I are lucky that we don’t need a car to get around. We take the tube to work and the tube and bus when we go out. Black cabs are sometimes allowed on special occasions. We don’t actually need a car at all, but it’s useful to get out of the city at weekends, and to go to Ikea. Getting a billy bookcase home on the bus is no fun.

With B out of action now (he can’t drive for at least a year after the surgery) his very nice Golf GTI is effectively mine to drive. I have to step up and confront the phobia. I’ve started with some small trips to Homebase and Waitrose (we’re very middle class) and I’ve adjusted the mirrors and seat position to suit a short lady. The handbrake will now only be applied with lady pressure.

B has been wanting to go to the sea, but that’s a 2 hour drive and I’m still a bit nervous about the seizure possibility. I can’t have him flailing and frothing all over the interior.

B’s brother Jens arrives today and we’re planning to visit Hampton Court Palace this afternoon. After dinner he’ll attend my introductory course on how to deal with seizures. There will be a PowerPoint presentation, followed by a roleplay exercise and refreshments.



  1. I hope there will also be tea, scones and cucumber sandwiches, or I am stereotyping British life a little too much?

  2. Yes definitely, and bakewell tarts.

  3. […] B was first diagnosed and had his driver’s license revoked by the DVLA, I wrote of my horror at becoming the ‘designated driver’ in the […]

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