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Driving a Classic

Posted in: Blog, by kayleighb2a, on 29th July 2014 | Comments Off on Driving a Classic

– Mark Topley, CEO

I’ve been loaned a car.

Juggling kids and work between two full time parents and 8 week’s holiday in the same African town (with virtually no friends around) means a 1 car strategy was going to be difficult. Thankfully a very generous local businessman offered the long term loan of this baby:

driving a classic MT blog

It’s a 1988, 1.3 Toyota Corrolla – yes that’s right, a true classic car. And I love it.

No power steering, no AC (bit of an issue 2 degrees from the equator), no radio, manual windows, no central locking (although you can reach all the knobs from the driver’s seat). It’s a stripped back and simple a car as I have ever driven.

It’s a pig to start, until you get to know its quirks (foot flat on the floor first thing in the morning, but don’t touch the gas when you start it anytime after that).

It reminds me of my brother’s first car – an old Mini (before BMW developed it) which he resprayed Unigate orange (you getting the picture?), where you felt every bump and had to be spot on with every gear change. You really have to drive this car. You can feel everything on the road, you have to keep it in just the right gear, and nurture it on every journey.

And maybe that’s why I am enjoying it so much – because it’s reconnecting me with what it felt like to drive as a teenager – simplicity, direct connection with the road, fun.

So what’s the point? Well, driving this car this week has got me thinking about how as things develop, get bigger, ‘improve’, we can so easily disconnect ourselves from the basic, raw feelings of doing something the most basic and simple way. How often do I make something more complicated just because I can? Maybe the bells and whistles of technology that we love don’t always make things better, and getting hold of something which does something very simply, but effectively, is a lot more fun.

I probably won’t be saying this tomorrow morning when it fails to start, but you get my drift.


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