Guus Bosman

software engineering director

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Our first car

Toyota Camry 2007.Yesterday I received an e-mail from our dealership that our new car had arrived: a black Toyota Camry 2007.

Yesterday afternoon I bought my insurance online, and around 3.30 pm I went to the dealership to sign the papers. We bought the car from Fred Anderson Toyota, and our experience with them was so much better than with Marc Jacobson (in Durham). When we went to look with a car at Jacobson, they really tried to pressure us into buying on the spot, and gave us a wrongly calculated quote, using a different APR than they told us they were using.

Things were much better at Fred Anderson, and the sales personnel was friendly and not pushy at all. After signing the necessary documents I saw our new car -- it's beautiful!

Yes, we are buying the Toyota Camry 2007, and it's a great car. In black of course (black is cool).

I am going to the office now after a nice MSN chat morning, to make up for the fact that I left at 3.30 pm yesterday. I must say I don't mind -- I get a chance to drive my new car.


It arrived!

I just received an e-mail for the dealership that our new car has arrived!

I'll go and pick it up today.


Traffic jam

My commute to work usually takes about 25 minutes.

From home it's a few minutes to the Durham freeway (the 147). I take this for some 10 miles, and then the I-40 Interstate to Raleigh.

It had been raining this morning, and it was still drizzling when I left. When I arrived at the point where I'd leave the 147 and go onto the I-40, there was a huge traffic jam caused by a traffic accident on the I-40. Because this ramp is a single lane, it took a long time before we passed it, and I waited almost 45 minutes there. To make matters worse there was a second incident on the I-40, which made me another half hour late. I arrived at the office around 10.00 am.


Cruising through D.C.

My first rental car.Last Saturday I used my newly acquired driver's license and I rented a car.

When I made the reservation I asked for a compact -- a small model. At the rental office they said: "oh, we're out of the small cars, in fact this one here is the last available one we have".

So, one day after I got my license I drove a Jeep Grand Charokee Laredo. With its 3.7-liter V6 engine and 4x4 wheel drive, it was quite different than the car I did my driving lessons in.

I first drove around the block a few times, to get used to the controls and to the size of the car, and then I went to Court House to pick up Sasha.


Driver's license

My first driver's license.I have my license!

After a long morning at the DMV with the usual paperwork and long lines, I passed the road skills test easily and I am now the proud owner of a Virginia driver's license.

Just in time of course for my move to Durham. There is a mandatory waiting period of 30 days between getting a Learner's Permit and doing the road test, so yesterday I had 3 big events: my last day at work, the pick-up of our belongs by the moving company and getting my driver's license.


Driving lessons

Learner's permit.For many years I lived without a car.

I never held a driver's license, and actually never drove a car. This is surprising to many people, especially in the U.S., but ever since I was 18 I have lived in cities where public transport, walking and bicycling were enough to get around.

A few weeks ago I did a knowledge test at the DMV in Alexandria, and got my Learner's Permit. A Learner's Permit allows you to drive a car, as long as you have somebody next to you. The past few weeks I have been taken driving lessons. Driving with an automatic transmission is a lot easier than with a stick, which I learned when I was learning with my father.

When we went to the summer house I drove for a few hours in Rosa's car also (thanks Rosa!) and saved a fox and a groundhog's life by twice breaking on time. I drove a couple of times on the Beltway, the highway around Washington D.C.

I'm ready for the road skills test now.


5th lesson

Dirty car.This weekend I was in Middenmeer, and I had my fifth driving lesson today. We went to our usual location to practice parking, driving backwards, the hill-start etc.

My skills are improving, and I feel more confident driving now. My father also pointed me out the various parts of the inside of the car, which was not as complicated as I thought it would be. It had been raining this weekend and the road I was practising on was quite muddy.

We also played three games Steden & Ridders: I won the first two and Mieke the last one. We had couscous for dinner and I was home around 22:00 o'clock.


3 & 4

We had a great weekend in Middenmeer. I even won one of the (many) games Steden & Ridders we played. Mieke won another one, Jaap managed to defeat us three times.

I had two driving lessons again. It's really fun, but tiring too. I have the feeling my control of the car is improving; specifically the slow driving (when parking the car or backing up) goes better than before. I only had to push the car out of the mud once.

My father made kjuveche for dinner Sunday, very nice. I was back home around 21:00 o'clock.


Driving on the Cultuurweg

Guus in the car.Today I had my first driving lessons!

My father and I went to the Cultuurweg, a quiet dead-end street, just outside Middenmeer. There was no traffic there at all, but it's a longer road so it was an excellent spot to start driving.

Years ago I once drove my parents' car a bit, on a parking lot in Wieringerwerf with my mother, but that's about all the experience I had with driving a car. I never really needed a driving license, but now I want to start taking driving lessons.

Today was really fun. First I learned how to start the car. Then I drove a bit in first gear, and learned how to use the gear-lever to get to the 2nd and 3rd gear. The highest speed I drove with today was 50 km/hour, but I can assure you that that felt really quick. I trained a lot on turning the car around, and later I also started to "park" the car on various locations. It's really fun to drive a car, I found out.

I'm not sure exactly when and how but somewhere in the next few weeks I want to either start taking regular driving lessons or perhaps take a full-time course to get it done quickly.


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