Well I’m pissed off. I went for my test today. In practise I actually managed to do the reverse manoeuvre first time, no shunts. I was well made up thinking I had cracked it, my second go I totally ballsed it up, but with shunts made it in. At the test centre I totally lost it. It was going too near the barrier again so I took a shunt, but left it in a really weird position. Started to reverse and ended up in exactly the same place. So I took my final shunt, but then I was everywhere chasing the damned trailer. In the end he stopped me, said ‘you’re not going to get it in from there’ and again I’d failed before I left the test centre.

This time I only accrued four driver (minor) faults, as opposed to the eleven I had last time, but picked up two serious/ fail points. I clipped a kerb whilst trying to squeeze down the left hand lane of a two lane road (stupid, stupid, stupid) and mistook a line of waiting cars for parked, so tried to overtake them all! Incredibly stupid!

So, four minor errors, two stupid mistakes I shouldn’t repeat, but still not got the hang of that reverse.

I can’t afford to take any more lessons (not that I show any signs of getting the hang of reversing anyway) so I’ve just put in for four more hours and a test. Which is to say you pay for four hours, in which time you have a few reverses, an hour and a half run out, then your test for an hour and then your instructor drives you back, immeasurably gutted.

If I don’t pass next time (April the sixteenth) I reckon we can afford one more test, then that’s it. Until such times as Wendy gets a paid job, or I leave DHL/Iceland and risk getting a class two/ rigid driving job with more money.

The downer is I’m alright at the actual driving (two silly mistakes aside).

My instructor said on the first day ‘ a lot of people worry about the reverse. That’s what? Thirty five yards? It’s the other twenty one miles on the road you have to worry about.’

I beg to differ.

And he was still enthusing after this fail, saying how I could throw a good reverse in, and how well I’d done on the road, etc.

I can’t throw a good reverse in because I don’t know what I’m doing, and whilst instilling confidence is all good and well, without competence it is at best misplaced, at worst lethal.

One bit of advice I’ve heard off several drivers is to go and get a toy artic and play with it until I get my head around the concepts involved. I’ll nip Asda in a bit see if they’ve got any, if not Toys r us.

I’m tired, sweaty, and incredibly pissed off.

If at first you don’t succeed, don’t take up skydiving.