BEING BLIND AND DRIVING

Hi all. As I have mentioned in a previous post, I was born blind at birth. For most of my life I have resented it because I wanted to be able to do what my parents did. My Dad drove a car and other people in my life also drove. For some reason I had an infatuation with buses as a kid. I have always enjoyed riding them and I even had a chance to sit in the drivers seat a few times. Of course I didn’t try and move the vehicle.

An odd thing about this is that my Dad used to go with me and we would drive in and out of the garage on weekends, when I was home from school. This is where I eventually learned why they teach you in driving school, to put your hand on the steering wheel at the 10 and 2 positions. I had always thought it was 9 and 3 until I heard a George Carlin bit on driving.

When I was a kid at school, I used to ride a 3 wheeler around on the playground and I was a good driver, despite having no sight in either eye. I also never had any scrapes with anyone else, who had sight.

Now that I am older, I have to get around with a white cain and it is both easy and hard, depending on where you are. The one thing I have learned is to listen for traffic going beside me, when I am at a light. If it is flowing in front of me it isn’t safe to walk across the street. However, if it is moving beside me, I am free to go.

I hope some day the technology is such that people like myself will be able to drive and I may be able to do what I have always wanted. I have always dreamed of being a bus driver, but unfortunately it isn’t possible because of my blindness. Let’s hope this comes true, with the advent of gps, maybe it is possible.

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