I feel moved to enlarge on my last post, which, being moblogged, was of necessity terse. For I don't think there can be anyone else of our acquaintance who buys cars the way we do - though the moment I write that I realise that the owners of the many, many Renaults seen today in Inveraray must share this with us.
We turn up, slightly late, at the garage which is also the local Renault agency. I am barely out of our current car when it is whisked off for its MOT, leaving us standing on the oil-stained workshop floor. It appears chaotic - sparks flying from some repair job in one corner, a car up on a lift in another. We are sent off to have a coffee till Peter is ready to spend time with us. By the time we return it is quieter, and once Peter has despatched someone to deal with the man with the dog we go into the office, a gloomy cubby-hole in a corner of the workshop. The accountant is in the outer office, so we close the door. Mr B announces that we want a specific model of car, with a specific engine size. Great sucking in of breath indicates that this is surely too speedy a machine for us - do we not want something smaller? cheaper? more economical? I wonder if perhaps Peter wants to make sure we live to buy another car from him in the future. We find out that there is a new model coming out - one with better clearance, one that might not scrape its bottom on our lane when there is more than one person in it. But there is no information (quote!) and we are sent off, this time for some lunch, while the specifications are found.
Lunch is found in a pleasant tearoom (yes - a tearoom) and we return to the garage. Peter is at his lunch, but has left us two closely-typed pages of info on the new car. We repair to a bench overlooking Loch Fyne to peruse same. Grass is growing through the slats of the bench. The sun has come out and it is warm. We soon decide that this is indeed the car for us and go for a walk, round Inveraray Jail, past the Piskie church. We pop in to look at the church, where we once worshipped for a year or so. The dusty pampas grass has been removed from beside the altar, and the flowers on the wondow sills are not plastic, but little else has changed. There is an odd smell, brewed God knows how long (quote!) We are glad to escape into the sunshine.
We walk along behind the garage, admiring a black Clio over which the swallows have shat messily. Peter has returned. He now seems resigned to the fact that we want to spend money and be able to overtake sometimes, and we fill out the details. We bodyswerve the bright orange special edition of the car and choose black. I always like a black car - I could've lived in the '30s. By the time we leave we are all cheerful. Our car will come sometime this summer. It's called a Conquest - a Scenic Conquest.
It is, apparently, a city country thing.