Sunday, 13 January 2013

Buying a car

So, my family and I need a car. In as much as anybody in Edinburgh *needs* a car, since in this city, everything is close, the bus service is really good and nobody in my family does antisocial hours. But we've decided we like having a car and we want to keep having one.

We don't really care about cars, as long as they've got four wheels and get us from A to B. So we enlisted the help of our friend Robert, who negotiated a good deal for my mum's recent car purchase, to take us car shopping today. By the time we left the house, we'd decided our budget and specifications - five doors, petrol, 1.2 engine. And that was pretty much it - we aren't fussy.

But when we got to Arnold Clark I started to get fussy! Faced with a real lack of cars that met our specifications, we got into a discussion about a dull dingy grey Astra, which looked really clunky, and was parked next to a big puddle. That was the moment I realised I cared. Because although the car fitted all our specifications, and we got offered a good price, I didn't even want to cross that puddle to get to it.

When I'm a qualified personal trainer, turning up to meet clients with a car full of swiss ball, kettlebells and yoga mats, do I want them to see me coming in a middle-sized clunky grey dullmobile? Will that inspire my clients with confidence that I'm a dynamic, energetic, fun trainer who's going to help them achieve their goals? Or will it make them think I'd rather be working in a bank?

So today I learned that actually, I do care about the car I drive and what it says about me. Which surprised me. Sadly it means that I'll be spending some of the week looking at cars, and inevitably meeting more car salesmen. I hope they aren't all as annoying as the one we saw today - because although he shook my hand before he shook the hands of Robert or my hubby (good tactic I thought!), by the end of our session he'd made me feel that I didn't deserve a nice car and that I should be terribly grateful for the favours he thought he was doing us.

He was a complete twat.