Legends from our own lunchtimes

Sunday, May 05, 2013

The Art of Living

"It is not a car, it's the art of living" said the sticker in the back window of the 2CV, but I had eyes elsewhere.

I used to dream of owning a Renault 8 Gordini back when Renault Gordinis were new, and had I had the means and been old enough to drive I may well have.

I think the owner of the one I saw today understood the tear in the corner of my eye as I attempted to tell him that of all the few dozen classic cars that gathered around our port this morning, his was my  favourite.  Or maybe he didn't understand a thing I was saying.  I can't be sure either way, but he seemed attentive enough.

There were plenty of others though, some German sports cars, one from England, Renaults, Peugeots (a beautiful 203 Cabriolet), Citroens including a fleet of Tractions-Avant and even an SM, at one time the fastest production car in the world, but none of them could match the mid 60's Cooper-S-beating Gordini in my eye.  Wandering around a collection of vehicles from one's youth tends to trigger all sorts of nostalgic memories which is perhaps why the photo above is not a Gordini, but could have been taken in our neighbour's back yard in West End in the seventies.

I spent part of a delightful morning buried in those memories, poking at them, the memories and the cars that triggered them, nodding and grunting approvingly to their owners, and then just as suddenly as they arrived, someone gave an invisible signal, the engines spluttered into life and the cars were gone, leaving me once again with only the memories.

Meanwhile back at the ranch, a girl on a mission, left alone and unwilling to be distracted, and finding little romance in things mechanical for that matter,  had single handedly brought the lack of tidiness inside the boat under control.

I suppose in a day or two while she rests on her well deserved laurels, I too shall have to sort out my bits necessary to get our season underway.

It's not the boat, it's the art of living.


Allan Lloyd said...

Hi. Julie sent me, although I'm quietly confused about you seeming to be in two hemispheres at the same time...

What is it about the French? I've always loved those early Citroens, and I think the Princess/Goddess design was the most beautiful car ever. I owned a Renault 750 (so 'Parisian') back in the early 1960's, then an R8 Gordini, then an R16, and used to be quietly amused by friends who couldn't understand why I didn't have a Holden like theirs.

bitingmidge said...

Thanks, it's quite confusing for us as well! My own catalogue of cars is quite similar, although I never did get the Gordini. Now the Opel/Holdens in France have been rebadged Chevrolets, because he was after all born in Dijon!


Allan Lloyd said...

There's a kind of synchronicity in your mention of Monsieur Chevrolet. I only found out on Thursday that the Cadillac was so named as a tribute to the French-born 'founder' of Detroit (le détroit), one Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac, born in the Pyrénées.

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