The day Lillian learned to drive

180 toy car 644129It had started simply enough. Ten o’clock eye test, lunch with Bertie then back home for an hour before being collected by Nick.

Lillian had never met Nick before but she’d spoken to his wife and she seemed nice so Lillian felt less nervous. And that surprised her. But then everything surprised Lillian; the price of seeded batch, how young the optician had been, too young to have so many letters after his name, how handsome Bertie still was despite recently celebrating his 60th birthday. She’d not told him she couldn’t drive.

She’d made the optician’s appointment so she’d be in town, get to the restaurant early – first impressions could never be repeated. Bertie was even more handsome than his picture – a bit grainy on the webcam snapshot.

Lillian was still on a high when Nick turned up. She looked past him and at the little British Racing Green Mini Cooper with the big red ‘L’ on the top. ‘One L of a Driver’ Driving School wouldn’t have been the name Lillian would have chosen but he’d been recommended to her.

Him opening her car door put her at her ease, he smiled as she put on her seatbelt and almost had Lillian in a trance with his George Clooney voice. “Have you any driving experience, Mrs Elliot?”

“I tried once or twice, long time ago. My husband… ex husband, wasn’t a very patient man,” Lillian whispered.

“Enough to know where everything is but let’s go through the basics again, shall we?” Nick chirped, compensating her lack of confidence.

“OK. Let’s start the engine, and…”

Lillian soon built up her confidence as she drove around the built up housing estate that had once been green fields. Everything changed so quickly, but knew she’d have to change with it. If those changes included Bertie and her driving a nice little Mini like Nick’s then, some things weren’t so bad.


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