I have rather unconventional criteria for a car. I want one that behaves like Dr. Who’s T.A.R.D.I.S – that is, it should appear to be bigger on the inside than it is on the outside. I don’t care what it looks like* (but I do care if it’s a horrible colour, or beige, which isn’t horrible as such but is just plain boring), I don’t care if it’s got air conditioning or electric windows (but it must have a functional stereo; a tape deck is fine – I have a fake cassette that is really an MP3 player) and I really don’t want leather seats.
What I do want is a reliable vehicle (to whit: as new as possible, please, within the budget) that is small enough to park easily (I’m rubbish at parking, and I have arbitrarily declared that the new car be no longer than my current car**) but big enough for: tall people in all seats; a family of four who habitually overpack for weekends at grandparents; carting large numbers of paintings around to DIY exhibitions; and any number of other practical tasks. It should also have a vertical rear end, so that I know where the darn thing is. Because I’m rubbish at parking, you see.
And did I mention it should be an automatic? This is new. This is courtesy of the Parkinson’s. In the UK, we drive on the left and change gear (we are inordinately fond of manual transmission) with our left hands and operate the clutch with our left feet. My left side isn’t working as well as it should. My gear changing is starting to get a little … shaky, if you will excuse the pun. Sometimes, literally so.
* Apart from the shape at the back.
** 4.o metres.