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Starting Drivers’ Ed A Little Early

, , , , , , | Related | January 10, 2022

When I was young, my mom picked me up at my preschool, but after taking me to the car, realized she needed to talk to the teachers about something. I didn’t want to go back in, so she told me I could stay in the car for a minute while she ran to ask my teachers a quick question so long as I promised not to leave the car.

Excited to be alone, I immediately headed up to the front seat and pretended to drive, as any young kid would do. I pushed all the buttons and pulled all the levers I could find, and one of those was the parking brake. Somehow, I successfully pulled it while playing, not realizing that it did something even when the car was parked. The next thing I knew, the car went rolling backward down the hill the parking lot was on.

It only rolled a little way before coming to a stop — we weren’t on that steep a hill — but I was still scared. Not wanting to be caught, I immediately crawled back into the back seat and buckled myself in, hoping no one would notice.

My mom seemed to take forever to come back out while I waited anxiously. In fact, she did come out almost immediately, but I’d rolled far enough back that she could no longer see the car behind the daycare building. She had run back in to ask for help when she thought the car and I were stolen before eventually coming far enough out to see where the car had rolled to.

She came and freaked out when she saw me nearly crying from worry. I tried to play it off as if the car had always been where it was and I didn’t know why she was concerned, not that she bought that for a second.

Luckily for me, she was so thankful I was okay that she didn’t care enough to punish me. And besides, I technically never did leave the car, as promised! However, it was quite a while before I was trusted to be alone in a car again.

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