Thursday, January 31, 2008

Driver’s License.

The FINAL Italian document has now been officially and successfully obtained…that is at least for Jonathan. Yesterday he passed the practical part of the driving exam, with MUCH relief! Thanks to everyone who was praying for him. Just to give you an idea and understanding of why we have reason to celebrate and shout from the rooftop, here is a brief snapshot of what it took to get his Italian driver’s license.

Last July he enrolled in the Driving School and went to class twice a week in preparation to take the theory part of the exam. He was given the clearance to take the written exam in January and thankfully passed on his first attempt. The 6 month process for him was very quick, as on average it takes up to 9 months. One is given 3 attempts on the written exam and 2 attempts on the driving. If you fail more than this allotment you have to re-register and go through the whole course again, including paying for all the fees again and retaking both parts of the exam. Pressure? You betcha! When Jonathan took the written exam there was a guy who failed for the 6th time, thus having to re-register for the 3rd time.

The cost of the process is a killer! You have a registration fee, doctor’s exam fee, fee to take the written exam (for every attempt), fee to have some driving lessons with an instructor(28euros/hr), fee to take the driving exam (55euros) and I’m sure I am missing some more costs. We’d have to add it up but you can say he spent about 600euros ($1000) to get his license. There was a poor girl yesterday that failed her driving exam, even after having 17 hours of driving instruction…476 euros just shot down the tube!

As Jonathan was recounting his experience to me yesterday there were a couple of things that I just have to share. It is SO ITALIAN!

His instructor drove him to the meeting point where he was to take the driving exam and they were running behind schedule. They took the back roads that are barely wide enough for one car and he was flying down them, going around 120 Km/Hr. Jonathan was trying not to appear uncomfortable as he was wondering if he was going to live to take his own exam. Driving through the city was no better and he probably broke a zillion laws and rules of driving. This totally makes me crack up because there are driving school signs plastered all over the vehicle. The old saying: “Do as I tell you, not as I do” certainly applies with them. Of course when they arrived the examiner was not there. When he did finally pull up he himself parked illegally and then decided he wanted to go to the bar to get a coffee and smoke a cigarette before getting started.

So even though one receives their license by successfully complying with all the rules and regulations of driving, once that license is in hand everything goes out the window. I have gotten so used to the crazy driving here that when Jonathan was practicing driving “correctly” I was even more scared. Driving right will get you in to trouble.

I will begin my journey to obtaining my driver’s license in September. I can hardly wait! (ya, right!)


Mom and Dad Kleis said...

Congratulations, Sweetie!

Praise the Lord! So thankful
you survived your "pre road
test test of your nerves!"
We love you and continue to
pray for you!

Mom and Dad Kleis

Jennie and Miguel Morel said...

ok...I just had to put in a comment. Miguel went in the other day to get his driver's lisence. He paid the fee at the bank, walked into the center, paid someone 500 pesos (15 dollars) to get waited on right away. They took his picture, printed out his card, and whalla...he has his preliminary driver's lisence! They didn't even make him take a written exam. He just has to come back in a couple weeks to take his driving exam. Perhaps paying the 500 pesos wasn't exactly the recommended way to go...but hey, I thought you lived in the land of the mafiosos! And of course he amazed everyone who had been waiting in line since 8am that morning (it was 4pm when he walked in). :)

tara said...

Congratulations Jon!!! That is awesome and I'm sure you guys are feeling a lot of relief--praise God!! Hope you guys have a really good weekend--we just got about 6 inches of snow overnight--it's so beautiful!

C.A.F. said...

Congrats!!!!! All that studying paid off! -Meesh & Code

Jonathan & Noella said...

To Jennie & Miguel: Props to Miguel for his smooth work and successful acquisition of his prelim driver's license! I wish I could pay a bribe of 600euros to not go thru this ridiculous mahem of legality. Did I just say that? Such crazy diverse worlds!

Jonathan & Noella said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben & Melissa said...

Congratulations Jon! Your hard work has paid; however, I will think twice when you come over here and volunteer to drive us somwhere:) I wouldn't want your crazy italian driving skills to rub off on our american culture. haha. Over here we just see lots of friendly birds pointed in our direction...what do the italians do when you cut someone off?

Papa & Nano said...

Congratulations on a job well done, Jon! We are so happy that God paved that road for you! We aren't surprised, but we share your joy! Another blessing and maybe another cake??! Love you so much!