How could I have known when I woke up this morning, that today would be the day that I would fall in love?
I should probably start at the beginning. I had to be in Durham this week for a work thing, so I got a rental car to drive up north. It’s about a 4-5 hour drive, so the plan was to load up the car with all the equipment, drive up the day before, spend the night in a BnB, do the event the next day, and then drive back down south again.
So there I am, halfway up the M1, when it happened. I fell completely, madly, deeply, head-over-heels in love. Her name is Glenda. She has tinted windows, power steering and six gears (Six! My last car only had 4 gears! What does the extra one even do??). I know it’s unconventional, but never in my life have I driven an actual new car before. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever driven a car that was made in the same decade.
It was the smoothest ride of my life. It was like gliding gently over the tarmac in a cloud. All of the cars I have ever driven have been old and quite shaky, and getting up to 70mph on the motorway was a chore – you have to grip the steering wheel for dear life as each bone-juddering moment you assume the entire car is about to collapse beneath you.
But not with Glenda. Glenda drifts gently into 70 as if it’s nothing, even with the driving rain and miserably grim weather, cushioning your body in her ridiculously comfy seats, absorbing all the shocks while pumping out funky tunes on her awesome sound system. I never thought I could be sexually attracted to a machine, but Glenda may well have turned me. She is like champagne, and she makes every other vehicle I’ve ever driven seem like hot Bovril. It turns out that after all these years, I am a car person after all – I just hadn’t met the right car. I’m not even embarrassed about the fact that she’s a Ford Focus Estate and not some tiny little sporty number. She may be on the large side, but our love is pure and transcends such labels.
Now, as calm and pleasurable as it was gliding up the motorway, there were a few minor annoyances.
Firstly, signs that read “Caution! Surface Water!” and “Spray! Drive slowly” do not adequately describe the lake formerly known as the M1. At one point I thought poor Glenda might actually drown.
Secondly, if there’s so much water on the tarmac that you can’t see which lane is which, and the rain is lashing down so hard your windscreen wipers can’t keep up, and the spray is so thick you can’t see more than 4 feet in front of you, TURN YOUR FUCKING HEADLIGHTS ON. Unless of course you’re deliberately attempting to blend into the grey as a form of motorway camouflage/stealth driving, in which case I truly hope that when my car ploughs into yours and we both fly through the air in slow-motion towards instant and horrifying deaths, that your last thought is “I should have put my headlights on”.
On a completely unrelated note, it seems that the fact that I haven’t owned a car for the last 4 years may have exacerbated my road rage. It’s extremely hard to express random and completely justified rage as a pedestrian, and I hadn’t realised how much I miss it.
So, Glenda and I just wanted to let you all know that we will not tolerate any further fuckwittage on the roads, and and if anyone who drives like a cock could kindly stay off the roads for our journey home tomorrow, we would very much appreciate it. Due to the horrendous weather today, we really haven’t had much of a chance to bond properly at full speed.
And if for any reason I don’t show up for work on Friday, it’s probably because I can’t bear to part with Glenda (the rental company just won’t appreciate her like I do), and we’ll have driven off into the sunset. Probably in the direction of an Autobahn, so I can find out whether or not her speedometer goes up to 150mph for a reason, and maybe, just maybe, find out what that 6th gear does…..
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