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Saturday December 28, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Saturday December 28, 2013 MYT 7:58:17 AM
by vijenthi nair
OWNING your first vehicle is like a rite of passage into adulthood.
It is usually your first big purchase and it comes with a financial commitment called instalments.
It is like having your first baby; which solely depends on you to survive and requires a lot of money for upkeep.
Many buy their first vehicle shortly after landing their first real job, and so did I. However. I did not get to choose my car.
My sister migrated the same month I started my first job a few years ago, leaving behind her precious one-year-old car, which my family felt should be passed on to me.
My sister loved the car too much to sell it although she already had offers. She was worried the new owner might not take good care of it. She asked my mother to coax me into buying the car, which mum successfully did.
Reluctantly, I took over the repayment knowing that I needed one anyway, even though the car did not suit me.
My mother always told me that cars had feelings too, and advised me not to show my frustration in front of it or it would sulk and give me more problems. As much as I did not want to believe it, the beginning of my car ownership journey proved me wrong.
It started on my first day at work. I reached my workplace on time and everything went well until it was time to go home.
As I left the parking lot at 5pm, I felt a certain heaviness while driving and pulled over to check. There it was, a flat back tyre staring back at me.
“Not now... not today! I thought.
I was not dressed appropriately to kneel by the roadside and I was not sure if I had the strength to unscrew the tyre alone.
Lucky for me, a woman pulled over and offered help. Yes, you read it right – a woman.
“Do you have a spare tyre?” she asked.
“I think so,” I replied, feeling ashamed that I did not even know what was in my car.
“Don’t worry, I have done this before,” she reassured me.
As we opened the boot, a big stash of books greeted us. Being a teacher and an avid reader, my sister had used this space to keep her books, I guess. I helped to shift the books to the ground and was relieved to find the spare tyre and the tools in place.
She wasted no time and changed the tyre in about 10 minutes.
“Done. It needs more air but it should be fine until you reach the first petrol station,” she said before rushing off.
During my drive back, I mulled over my mother’s advice; maybe it was true that
cars have feelings and this car sensed my dislike towards it.
That same weekend, I spent the evening cleaning the car inside out, and made a promise to myself to take good care of my car, which I do to this very day. Although I wish I kept it cleaner.
Now, my car and I have a symbiotic relationship. I depend on my car to get around especially for work and it depends on me to keep it running. I never miss a service and always get it checked if there is a problem and it has never let me down.
Anyway, that was my first and last bad experience with my car. Since then, it has had its bad days at the hands of my brothers but never me. Coincidence? Maybe, but you never know.
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