THE story in today's Straits Times, about the 26-year-old who became a millionaire overnight, reminded me of the girl who sold me the metallic brown Suzuki 800. She had placed an ad in the Classifieds.
Think I paid $10,000 for it and that was in the late 90s. I remember she told me that she wanted to make her first million before she reached 30. She was also 26 then and if I remember rightly, and in the marketing line. She told me that she was getting a new car and that it probably would be a BMW.
I wonder if she managed to fulfil her dream?
Anyway, back to the car. It was as good as a 3rd-hand car could be. It stalled silently one day along Holland Road near Botanic Gardens. Luckily, I was still able to steer it and rolled to the side without the engine on. I called for my favourite car-tow person who also gave me a ride home in the truck. (I don't really remember, but it probably wasn't as simple as this as I must have walked for miles looking for a public telephone... as I didn't own a handphone then.)
I knew a number of nice car tow drivers in those days. Once it was in the wee hours of the morning when my car had a flat -- and I was going to be late for work (those days, I started work at 4am) and he would arrive in the gloom of the early dawn, deftly stuffed the hole in the tyre with some kind of filling shot from a gun-like device, pumped up the tyre and got me on my way. (I had a handphone by then.)
Then another day, also along Holland Road but nearer Ulu Pandan, a van shot into my lane and crashed onto the side of poor Suzuki 800. It dragged the left door almost out of its hinges. The van driver, to his credit, was extremely apologetic (and more in a shock than me). In a daze, he whisked out a broom from his van to sweep away the glass bits, and tried to get the door to hang less precariously. Then we both drove to the police station at Clementi.
It was a rather strange drive as a bit of the left front door had fallen off and I could see a lot of scenery outside as I drove.
There was no worry about the left rear mirror as it had fallen off a long time ago (and I still remember, along Dunearn Road). It just decided to fall off one day with no warning. I didn't think it was worth the trouble of stopping the car to look for it. It wouldn't fit back in for sure.