And it was all good! I think I’m confident enough now that I can do it. I did stall twice, but that was after several hours of driving around including quite a few traffic lights for a regional town. Gear shifts are smooth (occasionally rough when stressed, e.g. a conga line of cars behind me) and can do hill starts on traffic lights without the hand brake! (but these were gentle hills).
I think it was also partially the car. The last time I drove it was a Yaris which yes is solid, but so is the transmission (i.e. stiff). This time I was driving a Getz and I can see why it’s one of the most popular manual cars. The gear stick was light, the clutch was at the level of the brake and accelerator so I wasn’t sliding down the seat to reach it.
Next step now is to drive a manual 4WD or some other similarly large car.