When teaching me to drive, the Wise One made certain that I could safely park my vehicle by making me practise in Tesco's car park on Sundays (this is back in the black and white days when supermarkets closed on Sundays - yes I know, hard to believe now).
He would select a bay for me to reverse into and then sit beside me, quite calmly pointing out that I had just taken out the front wing of the Mercedes on the left, the passenger door of the Porsche on the right, and the bumper of the BMW behind me. The fact that these cars were imaginary did little to diminish the terror, but it did instil a firm understanding that the white lines marking the bays were there for a reason.
Back then, as long as you didn't crash into a wall when you got back to the test centre it was assumed you could park. Nowadays new drivers have to prove they can park as part of their driving test, which perhaps explains why the students who filmed the video featuring a woman having an epic parking adventure were so incredulous. True, she was pretty disastrous, but it's clear from her efforts that she hadn't had a wise one teach her how to do it. Apparently it took her 30 minutes to park her car, and the students were there for every torturous moment, laughing, commenting and filming.
One of them eventually went out to help and seemed quite shocked when the woman refused his offer to park the vehicle for her. Now quite honestly, if a man came along and offered to park my car for me he'd probably get an earful for his trouble. After all, what's to say he'd be any better at parking, or that he wouldn't just promptly drive off in my car? Okay, so it took her 30 minutes, but she parked it in the end, and all credit to her for sticking with it. I'd have given up and found somewhere easier to park elsewhere - like a field perhaps!
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