I used to steal double-deckers
Kiedy byłem dzieckiem, obserwowałem kierowców autobusów, marząc o byciu za kółkiem. Teraz miałem się dowiedzieć, jak to jest być kierowcą autobusu. W jednej chwili wpatrywałem się w czerwony dwupokładowy autobus, a w następnej skoczyłem na pokład. To było dziecinnie proste....
When I as a child, I'd watched bus drivers in ave, dreaming to be behind the wheel. Now I was about to find out how it is to be a bus driver. One minute I was just staring at a red double-decker bus, the next I jumped aboard. It was as easy as pie. I started pressing all the buttons until I found the master switch and got the engine started. It was wrong but it gave me such a rush.
Wyjaśnienie konstrukcji used to I didn't use to think of the consequences. As a teenager, everything I did was on impulse. I'd been living with adoptive parents since I was thirteen and a year later I'd fallen in with the wrong gang. They taught me how to steal, and soon I was hot-wiring cars with them.
It felt brilliant, and after a while I'd take cars by myself, just for the fun of it. The idea of taking double-decker buses was like moving up to the next level for me, a new novelty, more risky but more challenging, too.
Driving them out of the depot was a breeze, surprisingly simple. You could say I was a natural. I used to take them out for a spin around Christchurch, where I was living at the time. I'd drive them at such speed that people waiting at the bus stops wouldn't even try to flag them down, they just looked confused; it was obvious something was awry.
They didn't realise at the depot that the buses where missing until days afterwards when I'd ditched them at roadsides. At one point I was taking two or three a day. Even then, I craved a bigger thrill, so I moved on to lorries.
I got a job working in a warehouse and one evening I looked in one of the boxes in the office and found all the keys – each one with the registration number attached. I drove one to London. It was huge – a 37ft-long, 22-tonne juggernaut, and I enjoyed driving it. I abandoned it somewhere in the city. At the warehouse they had no idea who'd taken it, so I didn't lose my job.
Lorries couldn't replace the buzz of driving buses, though, and soon after I took another one. This time the police spotted it was stolen and drove after me. I knew I had a choice – I could pretend I was in Speed and put my foot down or accept reality and give in. I must have had some sense because I pulled over and they arrested me. I went to court and got a suspended sentence, but went straight back to taking buses afterwards.
A few weeks later, the last time I took a bus, I drove to my mate's in Portland. He couldn't believe it when I pulled up outside his house and beeped the horn. The bus stayed outside his house until I drove it home.
I knew then I couldn't get away with it for much longer, that I'd get caught for good. On the way back from Portland, I was driving along the motorway and crashed into a lorry. Thankfully, the driver escaped unscathed, but I wasn't so lucky. I lost my spleen, appendix and also fractured my ribs.
When the police arrived, they realised the bus had been stolen. I woke up from my daze in hospital and was taken into custody. I was sentenced to four years in prison. I served two and a half years – that was a wake-up call. I used the time to take educational courses and used every opportunity to work, from cleaning the toilets to recycling rubbish and working in the laundry.
Więcej o stronie bierniej passive voice I was told I had a tremendous work ethic and I felt happy only when I was active. Having a mentor who supports me has also been an enormous help. He has given my life stability, something I never had as a child.
I'd never dream of going back to my old life. I've had enough of prison and certainly don't have any more impulses to steal a bus. I'm a different person, I follow a new set of rules. I'll always regret what I did, but my life had no meaning back then. I know there are no excuses, but at 18 I felt I was in a trap, with no choices.
Now I have a flat, a job in a department store and I live with my fiancee and her six year old son. I'm 26 now and my life is back on track. I'm happy to be living in the slow lane.
Kilka nowych słówek wraz z wyjaśnieniami i tłumaczeniem
- a double decker is a double-decker bus, that is a bus with an upstairs and a downstairs. Many buses in English towns and cities are double deckers.
- to be behind the wheel means to be driving a vehicle like a car or a bus.
- hot-wiring is a method of starting a car engine without using the ignition key.
- driving the buses out of the depot was a breeze means that it was very easy.
- the man ditched the buses means that he left them at the side of the road.
- he craved a bigger thrill means that he wanted to do something even more exciting.
- he was arrested and got a suspended sentence i.e. the court said that he did not have to go to prison now, but that he would automatically go to prison if he committed any more crimes.
- he pulled up means that he stopped the bus.
- he was taken into custody means that he was arrested and taken to a police station.
- going to prison was a wake-up call means that in prison he realised that he could not go on stealing buses for the rest of his life.
- now he is living in the slow lane. The slow lane on a motorway is the part of the road on the left (we drive on the left in England, remember!) where slow lorries and other vehicles go. Living in the slow lane is less exciting but safer than living in the fast lane.