As I had mentioned in some of the earlier posts, buying a car had made it to the top of our priority list. It would serve a lot of purposes. The most important one was that it would save 2 hours of Abbas’s travel time each day, which would indirectly mean that he could share responsibilities at home too. Secondly, he could pick Mantam which would help me head home straight away from the station and also pick some groceries etc if needed. Lastly, on days that there was some function or meeting where parents had to go to school in the mornings, we would both give a skip because our lives were so dependent on public transport, with a car Abbas would be able to attend and then reach office without any trouble.
Abbas and I both cleared our Learner’s Licence Test. Since Driving Licence was much needed for Abbas, we thought that he will go for classes and appear for the test first. Once he gets it, I would try my hand next. A few of our friends told that he must not take the test in our area as it is one of the most difficult ones to crack as it has 7 routes. They all suggested Sileverwater which has only 2 routes and success rate was very high. But Abbas thought that going to Silverwater for classes would take more than half of his Saturday, plus the travel expenses. He decided that he would give it in our area only. We were planning that we would buy a car once he gets the licence.
Abbas was very confident as he drove very well in India. I can vouch for that too. But it was a different ball game altogether here. I think it was tough for him to unlearn his habits of driving without rules and regulations and fit into a framework here. He flunked the first test and his confidence shattered. During those days, he had already started his research on cars and every weekend he would go to visit showrooms. After a lot of research he found that there was one car in a showroom in a remote suburb which was genuinely priced and it was THE car that he wanted to buy. He spoke to the Sales guy over phone and fixed a time to visit. I was not interested as I wanted him to get his licence first. But Abbas has always been like this, if something catches his fancy he will make everyone at home go mad until he gets it.
So, he convinced me to just come along and see the car atleast. We all went together in Ro’s car. Now the said car was Red in colour. Tammu said she wanted a Blue car as she missed Bulu. Since we were opting for used cars, we didn’t have much choice in terms of colour. After making her understand the situation, she negotiated by saying that if not blue coloured one, the name must start with B. Done deal, that was easy!!! Now Mannu had only one demand – the car must have a sun roof. Again the car we had gone to see didn’t have a sun roof. We thought that we were anyway not going to buy it. We will have a look and come back.
We saw two other cars apart from the Red one and decided to take test drives in all of them. One was SUV which I disliked to the core, it was so uncomfortable to sit in the rear seat. I said our Bulu was far better than this 😛 The Red was one was better than the SUV. The last one we tried was a Black one. When I sat in the black one, I had a feeling that this was meant to be our car J I simply fell in love with the car. It also had a sun roof which was a win-win. Abbas did have a soft corner for the Red car because it was a Sports version, newer than the Black one and looked dazzling from outside. But my point was that the Black one was so comfortable, the interior was beautiful and it had a sun-roof which his darling daughter wanted and the deal was best compared to all the other showrooms that Abbas had earlier seen(The price was a also a bit less than the red one :-D)
We went in and spoke about the price. We could pay half the price as cash down and thought of taking a loan for rest of the amount. Now they told us that since we both didn’t have DL, the loan could get rejected. We had gone to see the car on a Sunday and Abbas had a DL test on Tuesday. They said we could pay a token amount so that they would keep it aside and not put for sale. If Abbas passed the test on Tuesday, we could come back and proceed with the rest of the formalities. If he failed again, they would return the token amount and put it back on sale. We paid the token amount and came back home.
Abbas and I discussed and brainstormed a lot. We were both not sure that Abbas would clear the test. We were only thinking of what next if he fails. We liked the car so much that the thought letting it go disturbed us. Abbas spoke to Ro and asked if he could lend us the remainder of the money so that we would buy it without the hassle of entering into a loan. We promised him that we would repay him within a month. Ro immediately transferred the money to our account (so kind of him to have done without second thoughts. It was a big amount and I’m not sure if we would have ever done it if we were in his shoes) All this happened in the month of October and 28th was also Bulu’s birthday. We thought we will take the delivery on the same day so that we could continue the celebration as we did every year. But then 25th was Diwali and we thought that it was an auspicious day to get the car home. But we decided to celebrate the birthday on 28th only to remember Bulu. The car was named Black Beauty (in short addressed BB, we gave Tammu two B’s when she had asked for one :-D)
I will post the pictures in the next post with the Diwali celebration details also J