From the editor
I can still remember the licence plate number of my first car: DG9905. It was a 1969 Datsun Bluebird with bench seat in the front, nicknamed the Smurfmobile for its vivid blue paintwork. My father had bought the car off a bloke down the road for $600. He cut out the rust, bogged it and, being a painter, used his large spraypainting machine to coat it in the brightest paint hue he could find in the garage. I loved it. The car was my farewell present from Dad as I left home, aged 17, to take up my first job as a journalist at the Thames Star. It’s still the best car I’ve ever owned — it never broke down, not even on the countless trips back and forth from Thames to Auckland and for a long while it was the only car I had owned and never written-off in an accident (the next three cars — two Mitsubishi Mirages and a Ford Telstar — all went that way). Fortunately my driving skills have improved greatly since then.