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Is anyone else's DP doing "The Knowledge"?

(24 Posts)
missmash Thu 25-Apr-13 18:48:08

Just wondering if there was anyone else going through this. My DH is studying to be a London cabbie and its putting so much strain on us I'm not sure we are going to survive! He works long shifts 4 days on 4 days off then his days off are spent studying so I get very little help with our 2 DC's and its all getting too much. Any advice would be appreciated!

WallyBantersYoniBox Thu 25-Apr-13 22:12:22

It's for a year approx isn't it?

Perhaps try and look positively that it's not forever and that the benefits could be fantastic. Black cabbies can earn a pretty good salary if they put their minds to it.

My husband used to go away with the army for 6-9 months and while he was away I would just be of the mindset that it was up to me to run things, be there for ds and make sure I had adequate back up around my career e.g. A nursery with flexible hours, a good babysitters phone number to hand. So I suppose it's about forming a similar mindset for a bit.

Does he ge any time off? Could you meet for lunch and have some time to talk then once a week perhaps?

Thinking long term, a mate of mine has a child with a black cab driver and he used to work a lot of night shifts as he reckoned it was a better way of making money. So perhaps discuss now how you will manage if he is out for hours at night?

missmash Fri 26-Apr-13 07:43:15

Hi Wally, it's going to take about 4 years!! He he works as well so it's just going to be a long hard slog.
Thanks for your advice though, you had it really tough, at least my DH is home at night. I will change my mindset and think that it's all down Jo me then if I get a bit of help its a bonus!
And you're right it will be worth it in the end, he will be able to work when he likes so I can work more and we won't have to pay for childcare.
Thanks for replying, was feeling very sorry for myself today!!!

Rootvegetables Fri 26-Apr-13 08:00:27

Hi, mine is as well and yes it's really hard! I think it's the all consuming nature of it! I struggled a lot at the beginning as it seeped into every aspect of our life, the maps everywhere the road madness! I think we've managed to reach a compromise. He tries to keep all the stuff tidy and we try to go out once a week as a family. Those basic things make a massive difference otherwise it was getting to the point where there was going to be no one to support with all this money he would eventually earn! He's been doing it for a couple of years and working full time as well.

sarahandemily Fri 26-Apr-13 08:04:53

Hi there, my dp did the knowledge before we had dd and it was pretty intense even then. I remember going on holiday and he brought his calling over with him and I had to drag him away to get him to go anywhere. So i totally sympathise with you and it must be so hard when you just need a break from the kids. You are right that it will be good once he is out as it will be nice and flexible especially around school hours and holidays which working families find difficult. How old are your dc's. have you got any other help?

sarahandemily Fri 26-Apr-13 08:12:22

Sounds like there are a few other knowledge widows out there. I remember that even when we did go out he would talk about it all the time until eventually I would just say knowledge, knowledge, knowledge! This is still my code for getting him to shut up when he is prattling on about something boring. Mine used to ask me to help with point revision which I hated and was really bad at doing and when he went out looking for points at night he used to ask me if I wanted to come out on a adventure. Needless to say I didn't take him up on his offer!

TheSilveryPussycat Fri 26-Apr-13 08:38:45

Have you seen the TV drama "The Knowledge" by Jack Rosenthal (made sometime in the 1970's I think?) Worth a watch and may give you a few wry laughs.

WallyBantersYoniBox Fri 26-Apr-13 08:38:59

Four years! Wow. I didn't realise. Definitely need to put time in his four days off for regular time together then Miss.

That is a long time. Is that because it's unpaid and had to be managed around work?

sarahandemily Fri 26-Apr-13 08:44:55

That's just how long it takes Wally. The fastest anyone has ever done it is about 18 months, 4 years is about average and some people can take much longer.

Rootvegetables Fri 26-Apr-13 08:48:19

Hi Wally, you have to know every single road in London and every point of interest which is I think about 6000 of them and more as they add new ones all the time. You also have to be able to link each point using the straightest route there are many other ridiculous aspects too! It's impossible! I think they say it takes three years full time.

Rootvegetables Fri 26-Apr-13 08:59:14

That programme is funny, you can watch the episodes on you tube if you haven't seen it, more long suffering wives.

WallyBantersYoniBox Fri 26-Apr-13 09:22:01

Yes I remember my neighbour doing it when I lived in Sarf London years back. Out in all weathers on his moped with his clip board attached to the front.

I just didn't realise how long he did it for. They should make it a University course and give you a degree for that length of commitment!

I hope you manage to wok out a good balance, op x

sarahandemily Fri 26-Apr-13 10:12:51

I will have to have a look at that programme. I just thought of something else. Sounds like your dp is quite near to the beginning - about a year/18 months in he will start his appearances. My dp used to go on a massive build up to these but then have at least a little bit of downtime afterwards. I used to go and meet him in town afterwards and we would have a fun day out together (more fun if he got a good result). You could plan fun family days out for these days or if you can get grandma down or afford a babysitter meet him on your own for a bit of fun adult time like the old days before kids. Something to look forward to always helps with the daily drudge

missmash Fri 26-Apr-13 13:53:42

Hi, thanks for all the advice, our DC's are 5 and 2, I just needed a moan I think! I bought him the DVD of the knowledge for Xmas and although its very dated it is really very funny.
He's on his 2nd appearance so we are getting somewhere with it but you are right sarah it's the all consuming nature of it, his paperwork everywhere and the constant talk of points.
We had a big talk last night and have decided to go out at least once on his 4 days off-even if its the park or for a coffee.
Thanks for cheering me up ladiessmile

TheSilveryPussycat Fri 26-Apr-13 16:54:39

Loved the bit at the end where a tourist asks the girlfriend for directions and is bemused when she gives them the directions in "Taxi Speak". Bet you can do that too now!

sarahandemily Fri 26-Apr-13 17:04:22

Glad you are feeling a bit better! Good luck to your dp with the knowledge!

MacaYoniAndCheese Fri 26-Apr-13 17:08:43

Good luck to your DP and hang in there! I don't live in the UK so I think this is the coolest thing ever.

PoppyWearer Fri 26-Apr-13 17:13:06

Four years? shock

My DH isn't doing The Knowledge but had to do some professional exams over 3-4 months, intensive studying every weekend, about 18 months ago. We also have young DCs and it was awful, we were exhausted and it nearly broke me/us. I posted on here about it at the time. I really feel for you.

garlicyoni Fri 26-Apr-13 21:02:58

I do live in the UK (ex-Londoner) and still think it's the coolest thing ever!
So glad you got your weekly 'date' sorted out, missmash, there's something at least.

What's the betting your DCs will be freaking people out with their geographical knowledge? wink

garlicyoni Fri 26-Apr-13 21:05:17

If anybody's wondering what takes so long ... Mr. Mash is growing more brains! Impressive, huh?

missmash Fri 26-Apr-13 23:09:40

Wow garlic, that's very impressive! I'm not surprised the amount of information he has to process is staggering, and it comes at a cost to his everyday memory!
It is very interesting though and Im learning all sorts of things about London-if anyone goes to Trafalgar Square, look in the corner nearest charing cross and there is a sort of stone cubicle about the size of a phone box-it's not in use anymore but it used to be a police cell! There's lots facts like that which I'll remember too.

Tryharder Fri 26-Apr-13 23:40:13

This has always fascinated me. You'd have thought that with satnavs, black cabbies wouldn't have to learn the roads of London off by heart. I have total respect for anyone that does though.

garlicyoni Sat 27-Apr-13 00:09:52

Nice little video of a contest between satnav & Knowledge! youtu.be/z-Ne-BQFueM If you haven't got 8 mins spare, the Knowledge beat the TomTom by nearly 25% - it is a sweet film, though, and has made me homesick smile

Sorry, missmash, all this cabbie lurve isn't helping your relationship (though I hope it'll ease the pain somewhat - am already v. impressed by your secret Traf. Sq. cell info!) It'll be good if your chat with DH makes him realise there is more to life ... and, who knows, find ways to incorporate family with study?

Pilgit Sat 27-Apr-13 10:31:16

my DH went away to uni for 2 years. He kept his main contracts going at the same time so he was doing full time study and a full time job. At the time i was working full time (i am main earner so couldn't afford to do anything else) and we had am 18 month old when it started. He would come home weekends and have to study and work. I carried it all on my own for two years and boy did it take its toll. BUT there was always light at the end of the tunnel as it was for a finite amount of time. This is short term (relatively) pain for a long term better life for both of you. My advice - make sure there is some time off in the week for you - first thing saturday morning I would leave the house for 2 hours to do pilates - not much but it was my time and non-negotiable. Something has to be his responsibility that is, likewise, non-negotiable. DH had to take DD out to ballet or do something with her - alone - every weekend so that his relationship with her didn't suffer (and I got a break!) we also made sure we had a family weekend once a month - these were booked in and non-negotiable. On that weekend we would go and do something together - even if just a pic-nic in the park, it wasn't double booked.

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