I have no expectations that I will get this position. Or that, even if it was offered to me, I would want to accept it. But I still have to proffer out my suitability for the role and the company has to tentatively try and bring me in to see if I might fit in their organisation.
Tour Leader? I can do that, with my hands tied behind my back. Driver? Um.
Yes, I do now hold a current bit of paper saying that I can drive the big buses but I don’t have any experience on them. I passed my licence upgrade by paying a great deal of money for a one day course whereby I drove a huge truck around for seven hours and then sat my driving test.
It was very, very hard. Those class of vehicle have what they call a synchromesh gear box , which means as well as having the standard five gears there are another four higher ones; you have to press a lever on the gearstick to move up to the higher gear.
In order to pass the test I had to change up gears at 1700rpm and change down at 1000rpm, every time. I had to be constantly checking my mirrors (it was a very long truck). I had to be able to reverse around a blind corner, from both a right and left hand perspective. I had to keep up (and down) to the speed limit. I had utilise a push-pull system with the steering wheel. I had to make sure the truck’s rear end did not cross over any white lines, no matter that it took up its entire road length. Oh, and I had to know what colour the car was behind me if the examiner asked.
I don’t do well in test situations. I started to shake as soon as the examiner got into the cab with me and I shook the whole way through. I knew I wasn’t good enough to sit the test but the exam was included in the cost of the course so I decided to do it anyway, for practice.
There were so many things to remember, the most important being the gears. I kept forgetting which one I was in and the more I forgot, the more flustered I became. I made a total balls up of it all. Amazingly, I did pass. That’s actually how I passed my initial driver’s licence as well. A shaking bag of nerves, stuffing it up but just under the legal allowed problems.
Which is to say, I have that HR licence but I don’t think I can drive a huge bus that confidently yet. I don’t know whether to talk myself into it or talk myself out of it.