I paced like an expectant father as I waited for Pupil A to return the Driving Test Centre (DTC) in Hereford yesterday. I am not sure who was the most nervous of the two us but I certainly know who did all the hard work and earned herself a well deserved pass with just 5 minor faults along the way.
I had asked if I could observe the test from the back seat however Pupil A thought that would heap extra pressure on her so respecting that decision I took my place in the waiting room and made small talk with a fellow driving instructor. (Actually it was a an interesting chat about the industry especially when we were joined by the regional Senior Examiner, who was their on other business, the very same fellow who took me on my Part 2 & 3 tests just a few months ago.) Just as well I did get in the back seat really as the Test Centre manager chose this test as one where she would ride along and observe the Examiner. This is something that the DVSA do to ensure consistency and the development of their staff and is not something to be feared if it were to happen to you.
After a short warm and a recap on the ‘show me tell me’ questions we arrived at the DTC with time to prepare and relax a little before the process began. At that stage it was all over to Pupil A and I had no further part in her success. I will not tell her story of the test except to say that from the sound of it she was fully prepared for what she encountered and nothing really took her by surprise; except I think a bus emerging from a really tight junction as she was about to turn into it!!
At the end of the test I eagerly awaited the signal form the examiner that it was OK to walk over to the car and listen to the test result and the debrief. It was not immediately clear to me what the result was as Pupil A was fairly non emotional and I had difficulty hearing what was being said form outside the car with the door open . After looking over the examiners marking sheet however I soon saw the beautiful tick in the pass box and if I am to be honest heard very little of the de-brief points from that moment for I was more than a little overcome with joy and happiness for Pupil A and, I must confess, also a little for myself.
After the examiner had finished and the paperwork complete we had a little moment of self congratulations and some big smiles before the photo opportunity to show the world. The journey back to Pupil A’s home was tinged with a little sadness that it would be the last time I would be travelling that road so much have I enjoyed not only helping her to learn but have enjoyed getting to know her. I will see her again soon though as she has asked me to take her on a Motorway soon and I look forward to extending her experience in that way. I wish her all the best for the future and truly feel privileged to have been able to contribute to the positive affect a full driving licence can bring to a persons lifestyle.