Recently, I had to renew my California driver’s license. Having used up my online renewals, it was time to take the written test again.
Determined to pass the test the first time, I diligently read the 93 page “California Driver Handbook;” the test would be 18 multiple choice questions covering the entire handbook. (By the way, the Fremont Library has paper copies of the 2011 edition.)
Although the “Handbook” is chock full of essential information, I liked practicing with the “Driving Knowledge Tutorial,” available on the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website. Instead of text, the questions are visual. And, I took their five practice tests, too. The Fremont Library also has a title to help: “The California Driver’s Test Made Easy,” and also DVDs.
So what does driving have to do with mental fitness? I believe it’s fundamental to staying safe on California’s highways. As we age, our mental abilities may decline – but it’s not inevitable. The DMV’s website discusses cognition, defining it as “Cognition is your awareness of your surroundings using your perception, reasoning, judgment, intuition, and memory. Any cognitive impairment will negatively affect your ability to drive safely.”
Although not about driving specifically, the Fremont Library’s next program for older adults will be about “Mental Fitness and Memory.” Hope Klein Levy, MA, will present an interactive program on Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at 1:30 p.m. ; she will address lifestyle factors and will also answer questions such as “When should I worry,” and “What can I do?”