Driving School 101

Last night my 16 y/o daughter wanted to go with me out to my property in Needville, Texas. No big deal. She has been taking driver’s education and doing exceptionally well. She now has he minor’s driver’s license. One reason she wanted to go was to get some time in my truck so I can teach her how to drive a stick (manual transmission) since I have been promising for a while now. I thought, hell why not, let’s roll. I drove us thru and across Houston and switched out with her once we hit the country roads. She did fairly well since this was only her 3rd time driving my truck and the 2 times before were around the block and to the corner store and back. Everything was going great, starting, stopping, backing up, and even going up a little hill from a dead stop. I’m thinking she has this under control. But, at that moment when I was thinking that I still was not ready to just hand over the keys and let her take my truck anytime without me. It’s a big truck, a Ford F350 Crew Cab 4×4, so I would like to be with her a few more hundred times. Once we got to the property I had some trailers to move around so I could get some lumber out from behind one of them. She backed up, I hitched them each up, and she took them to where I wanted her to. She didn’t need to back the trailers up since I was just having her pull them away from the building and out from under the cover. Then she pulled thru to drop both of the off perfectly.

I told her to turn it around and bring it back facing the opposite direction so I could load the lumber a little easier without have to drag it so far. I expected her to pull forward enough so she could back up and turn around. But, I didn’t give those explicit instructions obviously. She pulled off the gravel pad, way off, and was (I am just assuming) going to just make a wide 180 degree loop back around. It would have been a good plan and she had the right idea. But, she didn’t take into consideration that is was pretty muddy. Or, maybe she did take that into consideration and just wanted to play in the mud. Whichever way it happened doesn’t really matter. Something happened and she got spooked or something and she dumped the clutch and let the truck lose all forward motion and killed the engine. She tried very hard, in 2 wheel drive, to get it out of the mud which resulted in he burying up to the frame. Now the truck is really stuck. I decided it was time for me to take over and show her how it’s done out here in the country. I found real quick that even in full 4 wheel drive the truck wasn’t moving an inch in either direction. I had her get back behind the wheel and I went for my tractor. In a matter of minutes she was back on hard ground. She was very upset. She thought I was very angry. I told her shit happens and kissed her on the forehead to ease her upsetness. She drove the old roads back and I drove the highway again. She promises me she will have it washed by the time I get home from work today. Sitting here now, I wonder if it will be done. I know now we have some work to do if she is to be helping me out at the property, especially if it is muddy. I wonder when she will ask for her next driving lesson.