I never owned (or drove) a manual/stick shift vehicle before I was married. My parents simply never had one....I didn't grow up on a farm with manual-type equipment, etc., etc.
Well....when I married Richard, his car was...manual! I had my own wonderful, reliable automatic car, and politely ignored his manual one. I stubbornly refused to even consider driving his car.
During our first 6 or 7 years of our marriage, Richard worked the night or evening shift at work. Whenever we went out of town to visit family, we'd time things to where I would drop him off at his work on the way home....or we would drive home, and he'd take a nap before heading to work. Well...during this particular story, we had been married for less than a year (I think we were coming back from Kansas or something...I was still meeting all of his family), and Richard was driving his manual car (with me in it). We were approaching Springfield, Missouri, and I noticed Richard glancing nervously at his watch. "Sara...you're not going to like this...but I'm going to be late for work if we drive home (we lived E of Springfield); I miscalculated the time." Panic immediately seized me. "What are you saying, Richard? You want me to drop you off at work? NO!!!! I can't drive this car!!!! I'll stall and never make it home!!!!!!" Richard was very sweet and understanding....and said it like it was. "There's no other way, Sara! I'll give you a quick lesson on how to drive this car!" I was not thrilled, and continued to complain. I remembered some things about driving a manual from when I'd visited my cousin Penny, who had a manual car....but my memory was quite foggy. During Richard's 5 minute driving lesson, I kept stalling every time I put the car into reverse. My attitude had improved, I simply kept stalling. Richard was like, "Okay...I'll get you going in the right direction, and then don't turn off or stop anywhere. Just go home and don't try putting it in reverse." I was quite nervous, but knew there was absolutely no other way unless I wanted to call my sister in law, crying, "HELP! Can you come drive our car home for me?" :) : ) I waved goodbye at Richard, and then sped off (trying not to hold a grudge). I stalled three times at traffic-lights, and nearly died out on the hilly country roads, but I did finally make it home!!!!!!!!!!!!! I had never been more happy to see our house!!! : ) : ) : ) : )
No, the experience did not cause me to be more comfortable with manuals.... I was so thankful when we sold the car. : ) : ) : ) : ) : )
Oh...how did Richard get home? I picked him up the next morning in my nice, wonderful automatic vehicle. :) : ) : ) : )