Tuesday, May 26, 2015

A to B

I had a call from the garage people again today.

They want me to get another new car ! Cor. Only had this one 16 months so far (I think the computer time ticker has triggered on my first Lexus, which I got just under 4 years ago). Yep. They're being a bit keen.

I've meant to talk about this car for a little while now. It's the best car I've owned, following on from ... the best car I've owned. Ok, the Puma I had for 7 years was right up there too but the two Lexus take it to a whole new level for a combination of quality, toys, performance and mpgs I've not seen since before the catalytic convertor strangled our engines.

The next would have had complementary leather seats with heaters ... but it would have cost me the satnav.

Opinions ?

The built in satnav is very handy. Not so much for the navigation, you can probably do better from a phone with Google maps getting traffic updates from radio and internet. No - it's good in the Lexus because you don't need to change your driving position to use it because there is a mouse like control within easy arm-on-the-console reach.

Leather seats - are nice, I'll admit but they're also very prone to Burnt Bum Syndrome. Otherwise known as scorchio induced by the sun beating down on the seats all day. Besides, the leather seats in the CT were so smooth, people were being thrown around in the back even on fairly gentle cornering.

Heated seats - are a curious novelty. It is nice to have that warmth on your back when it's stiff and cold but ... the common impression of heated seats is that you start thinking you've had an accident in the car ... Ooopsies (literally).

Picture ? Here we go :
Shiny car is shiny.

I'm not going to do the silly thing of changing it this early into me owning it. The car is nigh on perfect, the only negative points are ... the seats could be better (I have a nagging suspicion that my stiffening back is due to the car seats) and it doesn't have a flat loading floor like the CT did. But ... it's a saloon and not a medium hatch. The drive by wire software could also be a little more refined : I use Eco to tame it in town and it shouldn't charge the battery to the 80% hold when you're cruising at motorway speeds, it should leave reserve for when you slow down.

Those are minor issues though and are consistent with all cars. Every car has its issues and ideosyncracies. Very few cars are as easy to drive as the hybrids at the same time as having their flexibility and all around performance.

This is sounding like an advert isn't it ...

I would thoroughly recommend the two Lexus I've had but ... you do have to buy into them. The IS300h has only been out just under 2 years now and the CT will stay at a relatively high price point even after depreciation. The garages will also be a little higher in price than your local neighbourhood grease monkey but you're paying for service that you'll never see at Audi, Merc or VW (from what I hear of those places).

Enough about cars !

One thing about our roads, as we're going from A to B, they've gradually taken the enjoyment away from driving. We're limited by fear to lower speeds, although I cruise at a much slower than average 70mph on the 70 limit roads (yep, you read that right) because it's a more chilled out speed and I don't believe speeding gains you any significant time compared to the stress it induces. Our roads have been neutered by lower speed limits and cameras hidden in naughty places. Speed bumps rattle your teeth. Slow people hog the middle lane, slow everyone down and cause accidents by not moving over.


There's a more fun way of getting from A to B (game time !)

I'm thinking about resetting my Elite game ... The sad thing about the current Elite is that you can't have multiple save games. So if I reset my data, I won't get it back. I would have to work my way back up to the Cookie Clipper :
And the various other ships I have.

The want to reset is something I felt in the original game. The signs of progress in the original were your combat ranking and how well fitted your ship was. When you got the best fitting for your ship, the only progress to be made was in getting to the fabled Elite rating. The most I ever got before getting bored and resetting was Deadly (one step off the top). After that, the challenge went from the game and with that, the interest (a similar tale can be read for me and Warcraft).

That feeling of a ceiling has hit again with Elite. I've got my Python now, the Cookie Clipper is in the Zaonce garage and with it, an Asp ship I could happily go exploring in. But the motivation to use them isn't there.

No - it's not the end point that's important or fun. It's the getting there. Same with the Warcraft days, I enjoyed the levelling more than the hollow repetition at the end of the game. Although saying that, the end of the game was where the multiplayer lit up.

The journey is more fun than the end point. We keep evolving, changing, becoming different. I like that. Always keep looking out for new things. Fresh things.

Keep an eye open for new opportunities. Go forward. Not back.

I'll pass up the car opportunity (because I think it's a backward step) but I have my eyes on a few other opportunities. Possibilities that I didn't believe were possibilities.

I'm still feeling the tired but have that positive outlook. I think there's a little one of these (pic below) inside looking for that open gate :
Cya !

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