|The car looked a lot like this|
|The shift pattern|
One night, my boyfriend (who didn’t drive) and I had gone to an A&W restaurant for floats. All was fine, no stalling or embarrassing hitches as I drove us there. But getting home was a different story. I could not get the car to drive – it kept stalling. There we were, on a fairly warm evening and me with a curfew and I couldn’t drive the damn car. Over and over I tried and stalled the car for a good 30 minutes. And of course the boyfriend was beyond useless because he didn’t drive, even though he was 18 (he didn’t want to pay for insurance).
Finally after yet another stall and very nearly in tears – and I still don’t know why I thought of it then and why I hadn’t thought of it sooner – I turned the engine off, put the car in neutral and started all over again. And this time at long last, I pulled the gear shift hard toward me and then down into first gear. It dawned on me as everything finally worked, that I’d been trying to drive from a dead stop in third gear. No wonder the car stalled.