IN­TER­NAL KONGBUSTION

Our good doc­tor dra­mat­i­cally re­counts his brush with sor­row and re­gret, af­ter say­ing yes to an of­fer for his Ja­panese road­ster.

Torque (Singapore) - - CONTENTS - DR KONG YONGYAO DR KONG NOW KNOWS, WITH AB­SO­LUTE CON­VIC­TION, THAT HE WILL NEVER AGAIN EN­TER­TAIN A SIN­GLE THOUGHT OF SELL­ING HIS BELOVED ROAD­STER.

CCUPID and his fel­low an­gels have been kind to me. He has never deigned to prick me with the wrong end of his ar­row. Every day my eyes open like win­dows to a world where my heart beats in healthy rhythm, my legs work per­fectly, and my beau­ti­ful wife – my first and only true (hu­man) love – lies in tran­quil­lity be­side me. I have so much to be grate­ful for, that much I am al­ways aware of.

So, I have an ab­so­lute paucity of ex­pe­ri­ence in heart­break. Un­til now. Un­til the point I re­turned a po­ten­tial buyer’s text of­fer­ing a price for my dear, beloved MX-5 with a pos­i­tive re­sponse. They say you never know what you’ve got till it’s gone, and in that mo­ment the air turned icy. What on earth have I just done?

I have waxed lyri­cal on these pages on the virtues of my lit­tle Mazda be­fore, so I won’t

go into it in de­tail again. Not that my edi­tor will al­low me to sub­mit (ba­si­cally) the same pas­sage again any­way.

But he is in the Torque What­sapp group where I have whined in­suf­fer­ably, about my pain, so he might in­dulge me a lit­tle bit here.

She is more than just a thing that is ex­cel­lent. More than just her power, in­cred­i­ble agility and be­witch­ing styling. Af­ter all, that very night I agreed to part with her, I was test-driv­ing a 600hp ma­chine of far more thrust and men­ace, and out­right ca­pa­bil­ity.

But that test car doesn’t have the Mi­ata’s pup­py­like play­ful­ness. It isn’t a thing of joy, and most im­por­tantly, it isn’t my car.

I didn’t look back at it af­ter I had parked and walked away. I didn’t run my fin­gers fleet­ingly over its gen­tle, diminu­tive wings. I didn’t share a gen­tle chuckle with it about how it looks so cute. When a day con­cep­tu­alises it­self in my brain, it’s book­ended by the glo­ri­ous knowl­edge, till now taken for granted, of jour­neys in and with her. And there­fore, every day is brack­eted with a leap of eupho­ria, no mat­ter how brief. So many days have there been, when the knowl­edge that she was sit­ting there, wait­ing for a gam­bol, was the only bright spot in a day of other­wise un­re­lent­ing grey.

My car has in­stalled her­self in my iden­tity. Sur­rep­ti­tiously be­come a part of the way I see my world. When I write my ar­ti­cles for the mag­a­zine, they are in­formed by what she teaches me every sin­gle day.

I did not think about all this when I did the num­bers and greed­ily mut­tered to my­self: “My, my, what a pretty sum.” I was cock­sure and full of hubris. But now, every mem­ory trig­gered by the abrupt re­al­i­sa­tion of loss is burst­ing through, in high-res splen­dour, in my mind. I re­alise it, more vividly than ever, that I have in ex­change for a cheque, carved out a chunk of my soul.

So, I texted the buyer again. I asked if he would be will­ing to re­con­sider the deal, but mak­ing it clear I would hon­our it if he wished to pro­ceed. Lo! He let me keep my car. What a won­der­ful, won­der­ful man.

MY CAR HAS IN­STALLED HER­SELF IN MY IDEN­TITY AND SUR­REP­TI­TIOUSLY BE­COME PART OF THE WAY I SEE MY WORLD.

Merely sug­gest­ing that he part ways with his MX-5 is prob­a­bly enough to re­duce Dr Kong to tears.

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