Flora and I were out and about yesterday. I needed to pick up my Maple Leaf prize pack from Emma (thanks again!), and since I met up with Emma in front of a grocery store, I decided to pick up a few things. (Full disclosure: I put the prize pack in the car, then went into the grocery store to do my shopping. I forgot that there were coupons in it – whatta bonehead!)
On the way there, I discovered that Flora is definitely listening to her father during their car rides together. On the way to the store, I was stopped at a light. The light must have taken its time to change, because I suddenly hear Flora say “MOOOVE!” in a surprisingly firm voice for a non-driving toddler. She sounded just like her father, who can get a little….impatient when he drives.
Fortunately, the light changed, and were able to continue on our trip without further incident or commentary from the peanut gallery in my back seat.
When the time comes for Flora to drive, I’m not sure which one of us should take her out. Sean and I have very different driving styles. It took me years of living here to get the courage up to drive in Toronto, and I still don’t do the 401 past the exit to our house when we’re traveling back from seeing the family in Prince Edward County. Sean on the other hand, was driving into the city (a two-and-a-half hour trip at the time) almost as soon as he could drive on his own and his mother would let him. (Buddy had concerts to see!) So needless to say, he’s a little braver than me, and does most of our driving when we are traveling as a family.
I think back to when I learned to drive. After a few bad outings with my mum where we both ended up crying thanks to nerves on both ends, we decided that she would not be my main experienced driver. So I went out with her friends and my soon-to-be-stepda and everyone’s nerves calmed down. I still drove with my mum, but not as much. It was a big moment for us when I was driving to the mall and she started cleaning out her purse.
Now my mum is just relieved that she doesn’t have to do all the city driving when she comes up to visit.
Being home on mat leave was what really got me driving in this city. It was either get brave and drive or be stuck at home. Yes, there’s public transit in Toronto and we used it too, but strollers in subways don’t always mix and doing errands is much easier with a car, especially with a young baby.
I can’t predict what kind of driver Flora will be at this age, but I do hope she takes the best habits from both of us, and we’ll do our best to teach her the rest (with the help of a capable driving instructor).