It’s a usual norm when we travel anywhere by car to hear A scream “Audi Audi Audi!!!” or “Merc Merc Mec!!!” It doesn’t matter that my mother would suddenly gasp for some air, hearing the sudden intrusion into her busy moments while she is staring outside the window. It definitely doesn’t matter that N would make a face and snort, “This boy is mad, Amma!” And oh well, “I” dont matter anyway. So, I have stopped reacting.
While driving in Kerala, A and N were looking at the cars and doing an extremely important job of keeping a count of all the luxury cars on the road.
Suddenly, A asked, ‘What is that???”
His dad: “What?”
A: “Pappa, that…see there.” We look in the direction and see nothing in particular. After a few seconds, “That… That! That car.” We miss it again. By now, A has lost patience.
“Arrey, it’s a car. I have never seen it before. It looks big but weird. It looks like a baby elephant. And it’s only white in colour.”
M and I exchanged looks and said together, “Aaah, that’s an Ambassador.”
“An Ambassador. It’s a car, an old one. I learnt driving in that car. Its gear is attached to the steering wheel.” M boasted.
“Oh Man! That’s cool.”
“And that was our first family car too!” I too added, I didn’t want to be left behind.
“Huh…we had that car??” A makes a sad face.
“No, ‘we’ didn’t, ‘I’ did.” I am having fun now.
“You both are so lucky. You had such cool cars. And I am here sitting in a Hyundai.”
I wanted to say, yeah, we were truly lucky. Those days, when having a car or not did not matter. Many other things mattered, which have become obsolete now, just like the good old baby elephant.