Thursday, January 30, 2014

A sense of anticipation

New car arrives tomorrow ! (Yep - it's mostly cars today but there will be a bit about me at the end)

It's strange. I can't remember feeling the same sense of anticipation with this one as the previous ones. That's probably not the right way to describe it though. It's more a different sense of anticipation.

I suspect it's partly due to this one being a car I Want, instead of it being a Need to change. What changes does it compare to ?

First car - Fiesta. Didn't really count this as a car, it was the one I was bought to learn in and then ... only got taken out in it a few times. I learned with an instructor. Wasn't fond of this car, although it did reinforce some handy lessons.

Second - Astra Mk1. This was my university car. We didn't think the Fiesta would last very long, so off we go to get another banger. This one was rock solid, while it lasted. Well. Rock solid in terms of the very limited mileage I'd do at uni. The anticipation was distorted somewhat on this one by us going on holiday, so it was a couple of weeks before I could drive it.

Still - the Astra marked something very important. It marked independence. But it was dying, so I needed to change it before starting work. It had a fitting end, it died in a Pillar Of Flame. True !!! The fella who bought it from us was doing welding in it in his garage with one of the windows open. A spark flew in and ... Pillar Of Flame ! I'd far prefer it went out that way in a blaze of glory than gradually disintegrate in a scrapyard.

Third - Belmont SRi. No real anticipation here. We did a lot of car swapping ... My sister had blown up an Astra GTE, so she got my Astra for a few months. I got my mum's Belmont SRi (great car btw - underrated) and my mum really got the short straw with a nasty little Peugeot 205 1.1. Nothing against Peugeot's in general (they had an excellent diesel and the GTi) but this one was a Stinker. We needed to do the Belmont - Pug switch because a lack of power steering in the Belmont was having nasty effects on my mum's arms.

Number 4 ! Rover 420. The anticipation here was that it was the first car I really bought under my own steam. The ones before had been either bought by parents or owned by parents. Such a shame it was an unreliable, thirsty monster. In hindsight, we shouldn't have passed on the Belmont so quickly. After a bad early phase (courtesy of incompetent Vauxhall garages), it did 20k miles a year for me with ease. Unlike the Rover.

Five - the legendary Puma. At least I thought it was legendary. Again, no real "I want it" anticipation, there had been a long period leading up to finding one suitable and it was more a sense of relief to get rid of that horrid Rover before something else dropped off it.

But again, it was not to last. I got a lot of years out of the Puma before it too broke one too many essential part.

A Focus ST was the sixth. This change happened in a rush. The Puma had been failing for many months. The brake system needed major work, both for the anti-lock system and the handbrake. So I did a deal-in-a-day at Carcraft and then regretted the after sales treatment. (They're polite enough but their warranty promise is appalling ... and a broken contract promise is unforgiveable)

And on to Lexus ... Whereas I regretted some of the earlier changes, I've never regretted stepping into the Lexus world. The cars are very special and the treatment you get in the garages is stellar. That said, nothing's broken on the CT so no testing of the warranty. I suspect I'll get a string of them, although that'll be way off in the future when I've finished paying for this one.

And now I'm changing a Lexus CT for a Lexus IS. I'm looking forward to the change for the first time since that Puma, even if it is a different sense of anticipation. The sad thing is that I won't get as many opportunities to play with it as I'd like. That's because of some discrimination at work, where I'm not allowed to park until Friday due to living too close. That's right - discrimination by post code is a reality. But I am allowed to use it for business trips.

But enough about that - how about me ?

I'm doing a fair bit better. Still not out of the woods and I'm still having to work hard to resist making the situation any worse.

But ... Mad Pete seems to be back. I've been very inwards looking recently, which is something I don't like. I've been saving my energy for important things and because of how I do things and who I am, that's been work and looking out for other people. Not much impulsiveness, randomness or looking out for me. Ok, maybe a lot of thinking about me as I battle this skin condition. But the rest leads to a Boring Pete.

I like Mad Pete better, even if the impulsiveness brings with it forgetfulness and a tendency for people to throw things at me when I take things too far. Mad Pete can upset people by acting without thinking and in acting, not consider that what I'm doing is hurtful.

But the Mad side of my personality has its charms. At least I hope they do ! Now I wonder who I can try those charms out on ...

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