Monday, August 8, 2011

A Weekend of Goodbyes

This weekend was a melancholy one where I said goodbye to a long-running music television show that shaped the way I looked at the music world; and had been running in Australia for 24 years.  I also said goodbye to my rusted out Toyota Celica (at long last!).  
Now, I dedicated a post to Video Hits; so today, I'll dedicate this one to my car.  I bought this car when I was 19 years old; two months after I got my driver's license.  Dad wanted me to wait; but I didn't want to.  It was something I wanted to do, something I couldn't wait to do... get out on the open road and drive without having to be accompanied by somebody with an open license.  So, once we settled on a car, we got a personal loan of $5,000 and I bought my Toyota Celica Liftback from a local car yard.  There was a list of things wrong with it; but I loved that car with every paypacket I earned, every free weekend I had.  Dad helped me with keeping it running - engine-wise - and it was a great car for me to learn how to drive the roads of Brisbane in.  I loved it.

On the weekends I wasn't working on it, I'd pull out a referdex, pull up a part of Brisbane I knew and drive out to it, then spend an hour or two getting home another way.  It was a good way to know how the roads joined up; and to figure out how to get home if one or another road was cut off for one reason or another.
I even gave my car a name:  Little Vroom.  This is because it wasn't a loud car, but it wasn't a buzz-box either, it just vroomed me from placed to place and that was it.  I loved the sound of the engine when it was fully warmed up and it just pretty much went 'vroom'... I know that sounds weird, but that's what it sounded like to me.  So, Little Vroom was its name; and it stuck.  I wanted to use Jelly Bean, but one of my friends already used that one for her 1988 Ford Laser; so I couldn't.  
Little Vroom saw me also to Brunswick Heads, my favourite holiday spot since I was a kid.  I remember the first time I drove down there I had a great run along the highway on Christmas Eve in the afternoon (I had half a day off work as I was given NYE off.  I had gone home, gotten changed, packed the car and was going to leave from work).  The sun was nice and hot as I wound the window down, had music blaring out of my speakers from the radio and Little Vroom took me along the M1 at a good, speed towards the NSW border.  I went along the coastal road and through Wooyong and Pottsville where some of the roads were one lane both ways (and this was before the new lot of roads that have been put through; way before it when it used to take about 2 hours to get there).  I got to Brunswick Heads and found that I didn't need my car to get anywhere around the town, so put the cover on it until I went home.  It was a memorable first long drive for me; something I'd never forget... and something I'd do a few more times.  One time we were evacuated from Brunswick Heads and we were forced to all travel over the ranges to go home.  It was bumper to bumper for all cars, trucks, caravans and other vehicles going both ways in the pouring rain as we left Brunswick Heads behind knowing the river had broken its banks as we watched on just before we left town.  Dad had packed a good lot of his fishing gear in the back of my car; including his tackle boxes, fishing rods, some luggage, my luggage and other stuff as well (we were really grateful that the back seats folded down as the car held so much more then).  It truly was a convoy of travellers trying to get home in the wet; and I had to concentrate on the road, rain and other traffic coming in the other direction.  This included a car - driving in the opposite direction to me - losing its hubcab during the drive, which struck my car, rattled and clanked under my vehicle and then got spat out just in front of the back left wheel.  It scared the crap out of me as I couldn't pull over or stop until we got to the top of the ranges for a break.  I had to get my cousin, Cameron, to help me pull my license plate straight and check my mudguard and tyres to make sure they were going to take me home.  He thought it was the funniest thing; as he'd had the same thing happen to him once when he drove.

I will have great memories of my dear Little Vroom as we all do of our first car.  My Toyota Celica Liftback took me everywhere I wanted to go - and some places I didn't.  It became my identity when I drove, I could easily find it in carparks (even though I lost it the first time I parked it in a big carpark at Centro; just behind our house at Springwood.  How embarrassed was I to have to get the security guard to help me look for my car?  Plenty!).   I drove my friends into the city, to the movies and was responsible enough not to drink and drive or get caught speeding or be in any major accidents that caused it to be sent to a panel beater.  Yes, Little Vroom will be missed from my life dearly as I move on and hope to find myself another car in the future.  But as with all first loves, in the car world, nothing beats the first car love.  Little Vroom will never be forgotten as it was a great car to drive.  Until my next post, take care, keep warm and safe and remember, I'm always here.

1 comment:

  1. Nice tribute Lyn to a lovely car. Good memories.