I bought a new car recently.
Actually, the two fundamental parts of that sentence are strictly untrue. The car isn’t new, it’s two years old and although I am essentially the legal owner, I probably actually only own half a hub cap, a windscreen wiper blade and after the first monthly payment, possibly an indicator bulb or two. The rest of the car belongs to my bank. Still, details, details. I technically am the legal owner of Pixie the Nissan Pixo.
I haven’t had much success when it comes to cars in the past, in fact, I am sure that I am a used car salesman’s dream. I have a rather chequered history which looks like this:
An Astra that was stolen, recovered and subsequently lost by my insurance company.
A Pony (Hyundai not Equine) which blew up because some idiot* didn’t keep it topped up with oil and seized the engine.
*there is a small chance that this may have been me.
Ironically, this was closely followed by a Mondeo which leaked oil faster than you could say “Don’t light that fag…”
The Mondeo was part exchanged for a Rover 25 which met a rather traumatic end as the filling in a lamppost / stolen car sandwich.
Then there was the Astra that grew up to become a ‘I’ll give you fifty quid for it’ banger racer.
The three amigos that followed next were the Metro in which you had to angle the steering wheel at ten to four to travel in a straight line, the Clio with no heating and a Fiesta held together with rust.
More recently there was another Fiesta which, after an MOT, prompted my mechanic to use the words “I hate this part of my job… your car is fucked” (I may be paraphrasing the second half of that statement).
Finally there was ‘Fabs’, an ancient Peugeot 106 with four gears, no cigarette lighter and a top uphill speed of 17.5 miles per hour. That’s as long as you weren’t carrying passengers when uphill speed was reduced to approximately 11 miles per hour.
So, it’s fair to say that Pixie the Pixo is a real novelty for me, she (yes, she) does wonderful things like starting when I turn the key, stopping when I put my foot on the break, changing gears without distress signs or smoke signals and warming up when I put the heater on. Plus, the doors stay shut when I’m driving, the spare wheel hasn’t fallen off and the engine doesn’t stall inexplicably on roundabouts. Many of the minor details which were sadly missing in previous cars.
After being without a car for six months, Pixie has also saved me from public transport. Quite literally the most traumatic experience that you can face on a daily basis. Seriously, some members of the public should actually be banned from getting on trains and buses because they do things like this: have loud arguments down the phone with ex-girlfriends or ex-boyfriends, eat Primula cheese from the tube, pick their nose, eat what they have removed from their nose, drink beer, smell bad, shout at strangers, argue with bus drivers, pay with a twenty pound note for a two pound bus journey and get cross when they get eighteen pounds worth of change in fifty pence pieces, fall asleep and dribble, read a great big paper that takes up three seats, put their make up on, get on a bus before 9.30am and ask if it’s too early to use their bus pass.
There are also added bonuses to having a car, not least the opportunity to sing Bohemian Rhapsody loudly, dramatically and out of tunely at 60 miles per hour on the A259 to Chichester on a Tuesday afternoon. I also did a beautiful rendition of Kiss (the high pitched version by Prince) whilst driving out of a car park last week.
Last but not least, the car does not tell me that it’s ‘3 minutes away’ for 8 minutes before disappearing from the timetable completely. It is never too full to stop and pick me up and I never have to make awkward conversation with one my neighbours when I inadvertently sit next to them. My car will not sniff or cough all over me, I don’t have to stand for the whole journey, sway precariously from a handrail that I struggle to reach or be close to people with flatulence or excessive nasal hair… Hmmmm… Being in debt to my bank suddenly doesn’t seem so bad.
Everything you want, nothing you don’t – Nissan.