When it comes to advice I’m more of a giver than a receiver. And my husband…let’s say he’s more of a receiver but he receives it all with an impressive non-verbal response then carries on regardless. A perfect example is the trailer he wants to turn into a caravan. I have advised him to think again. (I think, Over my dead body! were the actual words used.) Then I listed objections, mainly to what I imagine it’s going to look like and where it’s going to be kept while he gives the appearance of listening and I hear nothing more about it. But I know that caravan is volcanic lava just waiting for the surface of the earth to crack.
My husband is a collector of classic cars, most of which are classics in-waiting. Another twenty years and people will be falling over themselves to get hold of whatever it is he’s just bought for a song. And I don’t disbelieve him. I just don’t have that long to hang around. My advice has always been to to sell the stable and get one really good expensive vehicle and as the number of cars reduced, I thought he was listening. At the beginning of this week he had only one left. And that sold on Wednesday. Thursday I dropped him off at the car yard to pick up ‘The One’ he was getting to replace all the others. This vehicle is worth more than the combined value of my car, his jeep and the cute little BMW convertible we both struggle to get in and out of. Now the one perfect vehicle I had in mind was probably what every woman has in mind. Something shiny with perfect – and agreeably coloured paint, leather seats, all the appropriate ‘extras’ and an engine that purrs. In short something that sits in the garage, is oogled with desire when driven and makes it’s body weight in increased value every year. Not the ratty old Landrover that was sitting in the drive when I came home. I’d already heard what a great buy it was and part of that was because of it’s ‘original condition’. Let me tell you what original condition in a 1981 Landy is and see if you’re as impressed as I am. Faded pale green paint and a slew of scratches on the outside of the drivers door from where the old fella who had it (and OMG named it Albert), obviously beat against it when he was rounding up the lambing ewes. Inside there are a whole lot of things that are levers and switches and none of them have nothing to do with comfort. There isn’t a radio or a glove box but there are quite a few things to hang onto, and windows that slide sideways to open which alongside the pushy-out flaps in the front, make up the aircon. Even the Ford Prefect I purchased from my grandmother in 1974 was in better nick. But apparently crappy old landrovers are big in NZ and if you have the right one you’re sitting on a goldmine. It is my fervent hope that Albert is a goldmine and he’s sold to a techsavvy billionaire in the not too distant future because if I see him sitting outside the house with a home-made caravan on the back there will be more than advice being dished out.