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