Thursday, March 25, 2010

Miracles do happen

As many of you know Amanda and I have been studying for our drivers license exams in China. This is a difficult task since the study material consists of 1,300 questions of which 100 are pulled randomly from the list and used for the test. Since there is no manual for driving the only way to understand the driving rules is to read through the questions and then try to decipher the laws. Also the requirement is a 90% to pass.
Today we went to the drivers exam place which is about 40km away in the "Traffic Safety District" of Chengdu. This consisted of a cold ride in a hired car that for some reason the driver refused to use his defroster in. After arriving in the "Traffic Safety District" we were to find the building where the exam takes place and fill out the paperwork required for applying for the Chinese Drivers License (DL). The list of things required to get a DL are as follows:
1. DL from country of origin
2. Translation of DL from country of origin
3. Registration form from where you are staying
4. 3, 1 inch photos
5. Passport
6. Name in Chinese characters
7. two forms in chinese, one of which is the result of a health exam.
8. Something explaining that you can drive both automatic and manual transmission vehicles
After turning these forms in you are then eligible to sit down and take the exam. It's computerized with 100 questions covering a range of topics from how to stop in an emergency to which signs mean what.
So after spending the last few days studying for the exam I am pleased to announce that Amanda and I have passed the exam and received our chinese drivers licenses. This means that we can forget everything that we learned and drive like all of the other drivers on the road, or sidewalk, or where ever they see fit when someone gets in the way. I'm not kidding people will pull onto the sidewalk to go around cars and pedestrians that are in their way. Perhaps this is why taxi's can get you where you are going so fast.

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