WHAT price fresh air?
Exactly £136.56, including VAT, if you were yours truly and had to pay to have your front passenger – that’s nearside in garage speak – window repaired this week.
It’s not like the thing even got smashed by some cove attempting to steal whatnot – they did that the other week, leggin, it with the little metal sat nav base when the main device wasn’t to be found, like some kind of trophy before leaving all the car windows open as if to humiliate the ageing VW Golf.
No, this was like one of those comedy clown circus jallopy moments.
There we were, sitting in traffic when the desire to shut out noise became more urgent than the need for cool air – after all there was a (in rain, leaky) sunroof to provide ventilation.
So, I hit the control button as I have a thousand times before only for the pane to get halfway up and suddenly drop almost out of sight, as if it had simply given up.
It sort of had, according to the verdict of the garage once they’d removed the duct tape applied to keep the thing in place once the glass was extracted from inside the door.
The window was intact but the mechanism that sends it up or down had worn out. Like a singular protest amid many squeaks and moans that a 10-year-old car exhibits, the window and its support act (a regulator) had decided to flake out in a bid for some costly TLC.
“Once one goes they all start going,” was the helpful and optimistic summary of one fellow motorist. “That’s the trouble with these old cars, stuff wears out. You should get yourself a new one.”
And here’s where the blood starts to upgrade from simmer to boil. If we had the money for a new car we wouldn’t be driving a silver German wheelie bin with bodywork resembling the surface of the moon.
If the Dunn household had a few grand to spare for a shiny new, low-car-tax-loving motor, instead of throwing hundreds of pounds of our hard-earned at those annoying niggles either side of the tango with the MoT man, it would.
“Never used to have this trouble with windows when they used a handle,” added our garage man as he swiped my increasingly worn Mastercard.
And there lies the solution, perhaps; not a newer car, but an older one with less stuff, less complicated bits, that can go wrong.
Or simply bring back windows that we wind up, not the other way around.
Nav a nice day?
TALKING of the sat nav...here’s an idea for an invention.
Having been dragged into the TomTom generation earlier this year and finally got the hang of it, possession of such a device has thrown up a couple of issues.
Number one is remembering to charge the thing ahead of a journey, which is fine if all your trips are pre-planned.
Secondly, but arguably as frustrating, is being able to find said high-tech aid when required.
Short of keeping it about yourself or in the car where some scrote will probably run off with it on the way back from a few jars at the Cock & Pitbull, us blokes need some way of detecting it around the home.
So how about a mini sat nav sat nav?
Okay, daft idea.