Elderly woman wants to deliver pizza; first, she needs her driver's license

Lefty Graves

**This article is based on nonfiction by actual events witnessed firsthand by me; used with permission.

The other day I took one of our daughters to get her driver's license. In the process, we observed an elderly woman driving a minivan pull up to the parking lot we were in. The elderly woman first went into the pizza place next to the driver's license place.

As our daughter's appointed time arrived, we stepped into the driver's license place, and the elderly woman who had gone to the pizza place soon followed suit. As the woman walked in, one of the instructors addressed her by name and asked why she was back.

The woman quietly explained that she wasn't able to pass her drive test because she kept scoring too low. She waved a yellow sheet of paper at the instructor and asked him to read it. The instructor read the paper and patiently explained to the woman that she had to perform specific tasks before they would pass her on the test.

The situation was further complicated as the sweet woman said rather loudly that if she didn't get her driver's license, she couldn't drive and deliver pizzas for the pizza place next door. So the instructor took her out to practice the skills she was struggling with.

As I sat quietly waiting for my daughter, I overhead other parents discussing this woman and her situation. As an elderly woman, she could barely walk, yet she wanted to be a productive member of society. Perhaps her retirement fund isn't enough to keep her going, and this would be a part-time thing to help her make ends meet.

Sadly, I'll never know the whole story. However, I do know that the driver's instructor was very patient with her and that she was out practicing driving when we finished our session. I ponder how she was able to drive her minivan to the office if she didn't have a license. Perhaps she had to renew her license and was required to pass the test again.

As I look at the aging population (whom I work with three days per week), I see more and more of them needing more money than they receive from their retirement plan. Many were raised to believe that Social Security was all they would ever need, and they never planned for more.

How old should a person be when they stop driving? Should it be based on age, or should it be based on skill? Clearly, this woman was sincere that she wanted to deliver pizza. Perhaps it was a dream job, perhaps she loved pizza. We hope she passed her test this time and was able to secure her dream job. Her determination alone showed that she would be a great employee. What do you think?

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Lefty has been writing online since 2000 on various topics, including youth mentoring, addiction, parenting, gardening, advocating for seniors, sustainability, farming & more. She resides on a farm with her family in Northeastern Washington state.

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