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news Detroit Lakes, 56501
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

It was my big day. The day I had been looking forward to since March of last year. The day I would be able to drive all by myself. It was finally here; it was time to get my driver's license.

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I made special arrangements with my grandpa to use his brand new red Cadillac. I didn't think it was a good idea to take my test in the VW Bug. Who wants to take their test in a manual transmission?

I woke up Tuesday morning almost bouncing off the walls with excitement. I was also extremely nervous. The silliest things were going through my head during my zero hour class. Like, "What if the instructor doesn't have hands? What if I run over a duck? What if I'm late?" All of which would never happen.

I told my biology teacher that I was nervous about the instructor having no hands and he simply said, "Well if he does, compliment his claws." It made me feel so much better.

Finally, it was time for me to leave school and take my test. I couldn't contain my excitement. My dad reviewed all the basic stuff with me on our way to the Department of Transportation. Everything was taken care of and it was time to go.

My worries were proved wrong of course. My instructor had hands, thankfully. We got all the paperwork done that was needed and the instructor told me to go wait in the car for him. Here comes my favorite part.

As he was checking my blinkers and what not, he informed me that my left blinker didn't work. He told me that I couldn't take my test in this car, and I was devastated. I was almost crying. A brand new Cadillac with a busted blinker? It was deja vu all over again.

When I took my permit test I had some little child crawling all over me. I guess I've just had bad experiences with tests related to driving.

So either we had to fix the car in 20 minutes, find a new car to drive or not take the test at all. I wasn't going to settle for not taking my test, so it was going to be one of the other two options. We found out it was a burnt out bulb and it couldn't be fixed in the time allowed.

I was losing hope when I had a great idea. What if someone at my parents' workplace would let me drive their car? Turns out, my dad's co-worker Bill let me drive his Chevy Traverse.

So here I am taking my driver's test in a car I've driven about two miles in and can't even see out the back window of. Turns out, I'm pretty good at doing that. I ended up passing my test even under the circumstances. I was so proud of myself. I didn't even run over a duck.

That night, I had pep band. I drove myself and my friend Rachel there. She didn't particularly like my driving skills. See, I drove the Bug, a manual transmission car. As you may know, they take a while to get used to. Every time I had to change gears the car jerked a little bit. Rachel seemed to find this extremely scary and said she feared for her life. She was overreacting just a bit. I didn't think it was that bad. Nothing like a busted blinker!

On my way home from the high school, I had the radio on and I was singing to myself. (You know, since there was no one in the car I could sing badly without anybody hearing.) I wasn't 20 feet from the high school when a cute little bunny ran out onto the road.

I know better than to swerve so I just kept going. I was so sad when I felt my car go over the dead little bunny. It was horrible. My first time driving by myself, and I hit a bunny. Great. The worst part is that it was one of those fat cute and fluffy ones. I was now Berit, the fat bunny slayer.

Even though I hit a bunny, I am still very excited to have my license. All my friends asked if it was hard and I answered with "no." I told them there was no need to worry about handless instructors. I really don't even know why that crossed my mind.

Berit Ramstad Skoyles is a sophomore at Detroit Lakes High School.

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