According to my research, the Dallas North Tollway was constructed in 1966, but it didn’t make its way up to my part of town until early 1990’s. The reason the DNT was so specially is because it took you from Plano, Texas (where I grew up) to Downtown Dallas (where I wasn’t allowed to drive to) in 20 minutes. It was a straight shot.
“WoooWooo,” I walked out of the DMV.
“Did you get it?” my mom said.
“Of course.” I headed towards the driver side.
“What do you think your doing?” Mom said.
“I’m drivin.” I got in the car and started it before she had a chance to protest any further.
“Ok, you can drive to school.”
“No, let me drive you to work and I’ll pick you up after school.” She agreed without to much more coaxing.
I drove to her office without incident. She hesitated to get out.
“Mom, school’s 3 miles down the street.” I tried to convey the look of a responsible teenage.
I turned out of the parking lot.
I put the windows down and proceeded towards school. It was a warm December.
Drivin myself to school, how cool.
But, when I drove up to the entrance to the school, i didn’t turn. Up in the distance, I saw it. The Dallas North Tollway. I could drive downtown, take myself to lunch and be back before afternoon classes. Am I crazy, yes. Am I going to do it, or course I am. I kept going.
I turn left and am on the entrance ramp. I drove this road during drivers ed., but this is my first solo. The most exciting moment of my life.
I stay in the right lane, but as I pick up speed and get more comfortable, I venture into the middle lane. The cross streets are zooming past me, Plano Parkway, Frankford, Arapaho, Beltline, SpringValley. I hit 635, I am half way there. I feel like a race car driver, hugging the curves staying in my lane.
I ride and ride and ride, feeling the freedom that only comes from being a licensed driver. It was perfect.
If I hadn’t been pulled over by a cop and given a ticket, my parent’s would have never known.
BTW, don’t take photos as you drive, it is dangerous. Do you remember the day you got your driver’s license?