Now I could, if I were so inclined, drag you along for half a post at least before I tell what Big Green and little blue are but it would be terribly boring and I don’t think you would last that long, so…
“little blue” is my little blue golf that I am proud to say is all mine. I bought it back in 2000 and any minor damage on my car has all been caused / inflicted by other people.
“Big Green” is the car I am currently driving because “little blue” is visiting the panel beaters for 10 days. Yes, a few weeks ago I was driving standing still on Empire Road when some young twit ploughed in to the back of my car. His excuse – his foot slipped off the clutch.
My mom says I mustn’t be too angry with him because this very ‘foot slipping off the clutch’ thing once happened to her. And she has the crunched up chest-of-drawers in the garage to prove it. Of course my mom, just like Bucko behind me, didn’t suffer any damage on her vehicle. Me, I feel the chest-of-drawers’ pain.
Long story short, “little blue” is getting repaired so I get to drive around in an Outsurance green courtesy car.
I have been driving the same car for almost a decade now, so driving something else has been both fun and frightening. On my second day of driving “Big Green” I came home and declared that no longer would I be saving up for a house, I was just going to focus on getting a new car instead. Now on day 6 of driving the ‘something else’, I’m not so sure.
So here then is my comparison between the two, perhaps at the end I’ll know for sure if I should start looking at financing and booking test drives.
Sound and Noise
BG – the engine is so quiet I almost stalled the car a few times because I wasn’t sure if the engine was still running. But the sound system is great and the bass thumps just so that even if I did stall the car the bass would carry me along in rush hour traffic until I got it restarted again.
lb – it’s like the engine talks to me, telling me what to do, when to change gears and when to accelerate. The sound system is minus a speaker that fell out quite some time ago. The CD player doesn’t always share my taste in tunes so it just skips the ones it doesn’t like yet I know it so well that I never have to take my eyes off the road to change radio stations.
Size and Space
lb – like the name says, blue is a little car. It fits easily into parking spaces. It is an extension of me almost, I know exactly what spaces I can and can’t fit into. Not that I am inclined to recklessly zip through traffic, but it is just so easy to take that little gap that has opened and I need to change lanes to be able to take my turn off.
BG – this car just feels huge. With all it’s rounded edges it may be way more aerodynamic but it’s a bitch to park because I am never sure where the darn thing ends. And you know, when you’re parking next to the CEO’s giant, seriously-compensating-for-something Land Cruiser, knowing where your own vehicle ends is important. I do not want to be the one who dents the boss’s ego car, especially not during performance appraisal time.
Glitz and Glam
BG – once I got all the buttons figured out it was a dream. Before that, not so much. Driving to work at six in the morning with the window down because you can’t figure out how to get it closed again gets old and cold very quickly. I’ve also never been a fan of central locking, it just doesn’t feel safe, especially when one push of a button unlocks all the doors. I live in Joburg and am all to aware that an unlocked door is an invitation to folk who feel my possessions, and possibly even my life, is theirs for the taking.
lb – About the only button that comes as standard is the one for switching on the lights. This is a good thing. The lights and indicators on BG are all set / housed (is there a correct technical term for this, somebody, anybody?) on the same damn lever. Which explains why, just after I had changed lanes on the highway, I found myself in the dark. Literally. By using the indicator I managed to switch off the lights and nearly caused myself to have a heart attack. My apologies to my fellow motorists if I scared you witless with my little ‘now you see me, now you don’t’ magic act so early in the morning.
Courtesy and Confidence
BG – there is something to be said for sporting your insurance company’s colour and logo (and telephone number) on your car, people give you a wide berth. Like finally they realise that cutting in front of you or driving so close behind you it can almost be deemed an intimate encounter is really just not the done thing. Why, because if they get too close, like in close enough to cause damage, they will get intimately acquainted with my insurance company and it will not be pleasant.
lb – sadly I don’t get as much courtesy out on the road in my little blue car as I do in the big green one so that is a definite plus in BG’s favour. But I do have a lot of confidence when driving my own car. I know its limitations and its quirks. I’m not scared to drive it. With Big Green I am unsure and uncertain; I came out of Pick ‘n Pay this morning and nearly freaked out because it looked like there was damage on the passenger side door and my first thought was ‘WTF? what, when and how did I do that’. Only to go round to the driver’s side and realise that what looks like a dent is actually how the car is made (or I did an awesome job creating matching dents on either side of the car without even realising it).
Rest and Relaxation
BG – I get neither when I drive this car. I am stressed, partly as a hold over from the accident but mostly because this is not my car and OMG what if I damage it somehow.
lb – I’m a careful driver and I try to be courteous. And in nine years of driving it all damage on the car came about because of other people’s reckless actions.
I’m sure if I drove BG long enough I’d get used it it, get to know it as well as I know lb. I might even get the hang of parking it. But as long as BG carries a starting price tag of over R150 000 I’m going to stick with my all paid up little blue. In the end it’s all about the money; isn’t that always the case?