(Taken from my new car page)

Drove the car to work today. Typically I drive from Sterling to Reston, but today I have meetings downtown, so to D.C. I went. I stalled only once, about five minutes after I left home in no traffic. The rest of the trip was stall-free, although there was a little drama here and there. I ended up using the parking brake on steep hills, and I tried my best not to overuse the clutch in stop-and-go traffic. This is going to take some work – and what better way to get used to a stick than to drive it in rush hour? Eventually, I’ll get to the point where stopping and starting are second nature.

Last night I drove up a hill in my neighborhood at least 10 times, probably more. I started at the bottom, hit the brakes, and practiced starting without rolling back or using the parking brake. Then stopped and did it again, and again, and again, until I got to the top of the hill. Then it was time to circle through the neighborhood, get to the bottom of the hill, and try again. And again. And again. Eventually I got to the point where I was stalling less than I was starting, but it’s definitely a skill I’ll have to really practice. Until then, there’s the good ol’ parking brake.

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