Driving

Believe it or not, until about 5 years ago, I used to own a Porsche 911. It was a beautiful car, in fact I chose my featured image because it shows the same model and colour (although it is actually just a stock photo and mine was a cabriolet). I’d owned this car for years but for the last few I just drove it back and forth to the rail station, about 11km (7-8 mi) away. I had some expensive things go wrong with the car, and coincidentally, wanted to reduce my footprint.

I decided to buy a smaller car. Ideally I’d have liked a Smart car, although at that time my daughter was still living at home, so although the car mostly had an occupancy of just one, on occasion I needed for the car to seat all three of us.

The best car I found was a Toyota iQ. Although I always thought it was a bit ugly, I was impressed by the gadgetry, which most cars of that size/economy lacked. “Small” tended to equate to “bottom of the range”. So I went and bought one. Not that I could bring myself to part with the Porsche, however, this sat on the driveway for another six months!

By M 93 – Self-photographed, Attribution, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7092528

I happily drove the iQ around for years, but in the meantime, Toyota obviously decided that the car was a flop, and ceased production.

Then, of course, the stroke took out my left hand, and I was unable to change gear (in the UK, our cars are right-hand drive and 90% of them are manual, so the left hand is required for changing gear). We still have the car – my wife prefers it to the family car that she used to drive, also daughter has since moved out so we don’t need anything so big.

For a few months after the stroke, my eyesight was such that I wouldn’t have been able to drive, period. However that has improved by now, although obviously I still have issues with my arm. I think it would be possible to drive an automatic – possibly I may need to modify it, but this is do-able at a price.

I always liked the iQ, and Toyota did make an automatic version, although since they no longer make the car, I’m restricted to the secondhand market. So that’s where I’m at currently – the only trouble is, these cars seem to be like rocking horse poo – very rare indeed! Especially as I’d need my wife to take me to the dealer for a test-drive, and I’m reluctant to make her drive any distance.