Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Youth And Beauty Brigade 

My poor old Toyota Nosebleed reached the point where the only humane thing left for it was to lead it into a field and put a gun to its head.

It was a long time coming.
The main beam flicked itself on each time I stopped right indicating.
The brake disks suffered chronic arthritis, and made a point of broadcasting the fact to everybody within a mile radius.
Assorted dashboard lights twinkled randomly off and on for their own demented amusement – you're out of petrol; you've loads of petrol; you've left the handbrake on; just kidding! Fasten your seatbelt! The boot's not shut properly! Ejector seat countdown initiated! This model doesn't have an ejector seat! Oh yes it does! - like Christmas tree lights gone mad. It was a merciful end.

After the dullest week of my life spent studying the form on Autobore.co.uk, today I've taken the plunge and bought me one of them little Suzuki Migraines.
It's not the sexiest thing on four wheels but it's nippy enough for my sedate requirements, and at least it doesn't sound like a donkey with toothache.
On the downside, it's in LOOK AT ME!!! lime green, not my colour of choice, but I'd had as much as I could take of Autobore and that's the price you pay for getting your life back.

This evening I donned my leatherette driving gloves and with a roguish twirl of my moustache took Girlfriend for a spin through the Blackpool Illuminations – the greatest test of any car's willingness to serve; the Nosebleed would have refused at the first jump – and it came though with no faults. It's an evocative ride, the cheerfully gaudy lights offsetting the “Bloody hell! How did it get dark so early?” gloominess of the “But it's only just September” evening.

Best of all, it's the first car I've owned with a CD player.
I dusted off my California compilation CDs – the opening guitar figure of Don't Fear The Reaper sounds fantastic wherever you are, da da da der, der der, da da da danggGG – momentarily swapping the muted blue grey of the Irish Sea for the vivid electroshock of the Pacific Ocean, and pretended I was back on Highway One, the California sun pouring down my face, the wind in my parts.

Squint and you could easily take Cleveleys to be Santa Cruz.
Close your eyes and I'll kiss you.

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