Episode 269. Ford StreetKa. WU04 ZLV. (Part 8).

 Why am I bothering with this junk?

I mean, that's what my friend said as he stood there watching me finish up washing the Bentley, and then start to wash the StreetKa with the same love and attention that I'd just given the Bentley. He went on to say that he couldn't understand why a fella with a Bentley would have any interest at all in a StreetKa, but not only that, it wasn't even a good StreetKa, it was probably the worst one he'd ever seen. I don't know I said, but I have a date tonight. "A date?!" He replied, "You really haven't fully got your head around this married thing yet have you? Does the wife know?" I told him that I wasn't sure, I'd not told her so maybe not. I'll probably let her know later. "Is it the Girlfriend, and tell me you're not cleaning the StreetKa to take that, tell me you're taking the Bentley." I laughed and told him that it was not the Girlfriend, but asked him why he would jump straight to that conclusion, I could've been going out on a date with her Worshipfulness, as the two of us quite often leave the kids at home, and go out on a date night together. (In case you're wondering, no, we're not the McCanns, my Folks come over to eat our food, and watch our kids) "Are you taking the wife out?" He enquired. No, I said don't be ridiculous. "Who are you taking out, do you have a new Girlfriend?!" He spluttered. I'll be honest, I think he was starting to get a little bit irrate, and the fun of this conversation was starting to wear thinner than my hair cut so I told him that I didn't have a new Girlfriend, or even a Boyfriend before he asked. Tonights date was just about me, and the StreetKa named desire. And no, I'm not one of those fellas that gets a bit overly excited about their cars if you know what I mean. He stood there for a moment before saying, "So you've got this beautful Bentley, but instead of taking that out, you're going out in the crappiest car you've ever owned, and you've got no particular place to go, you're just going out to aimlessly drive about. What's the point in that?" I told him that the problem with the Bentley is that it's out of fuel again, whereas the StreetKa has gallons on board, and even after I've been out driving about all evening it'll still probably have gallons of fuel on board. Plus, I like this little StreetKa, infact, I wonder if I even prefer it to the Bentley... I think that maybe I do. "Whatever's wrong with you, is no small thing" He muttered before wandering back to his car and driving away. I dunno, he may have a point there.

The thing is, I think the reason my friend wasn't getting it is that as a car driver he looks at a car as a tool. It's purpose is to get him from A to B with minimal fuss, and this I think is how a great many car owners look at their cars. My friend has never owned a motorcycle, and has never really had any close friends who ride motorcycles, and infact, I would go as far as to say that he's never even ridden a motorcycle. Something that I find a bit odd if I'm honest, as with the exception of a handfull of friends we've pretty much all atleast had a go at riding a motorcycle. But anyway the reason I'm bringing that up is because I think that for the most part motorcyclists look at their chosen mode of transport in a different manner. Yes they're for getting them about from A to B, but I think all the motorcyclists I know really love their bikes, and really care about them. But not only that, they ride them for fun, for recreation, to get away from the stress of the daily grind. Unlike a great many car drivers it's more than an A to B tool for ferrying them about, it's a way of life. For a good few years now I have wondered why we, as car enthusiasts don't enjoy the same thing, and just go out driving for no other reason than just to go or a drive. So, a couple of years back I started doing just that, heading out alone, just me, my car, and my thoughts.  

As the crisp, dark Winter evening started to close in I said cheerio to her Worshipfulness and headed out to the StreetKa named desire. I'll be honest, despite pottering about in the Bentley just lately I was quite looking forward to this. I unlocked the StreetKa, got in, closed the door and jabbed the key into the ignition. The StreetKa burst into life as I twisted the key, man that's boring, I thought to myself, I really need a START button now. Incase you're wondering, yes, I ordered one off fleabay when I got home last night! But with the StreetKa running I headed out, I thought that my first port of call might be the railway station car park, the scene of my little acceleration test in the Bentley. I pulled up in roughly the same spot, and said to myself, ready? Before shoving the GO pedal into the floor as hard as I could with my size 9s. Don't get me wrong, we were off alright, but not with quite the same urgency as the Bentley. it felt almost a little pedestrian, and it certainly didn't feel like the acceleration was forcing my hair line to receed even further. My feeling was that had I not still had my acceleration test with the Bentley fresh in my mind I think this would've felt quite nippy, but jumping from that to this the StreetKa just felt a little... meh. Despite this, there was still excitement to be had as I approached the end of the carpark I think I had over estimated the stopping power of the StreetKa. That Bentley stopped so quick I thought about shutting my eyes to keep them in place, whereas this, well I was standing on the WOAH pedal pretty hard, but the end of the car park continued to approach. It did manage to pull up in time, but nowhere near as fast as the far bigger and heavier Bentley, I'll be honest, I did think I'd be throwing my underwear away last night!

With my acceleration test complete I headed out just to drive aimlessly about. I didn't really go anywhere, infact I didn't even leave the town where I live, but still managed to drive for the best part of two hours, just me, my little machine, and the open road. It was great, and to be honest a far better way to spend the evening than sitting in front of the TV. I'd even go as far as to say that I came back feeling quite refreshed, and I'd really done nothing but blatt about the town, and maybe used £10 worth of Go-Go juice in the process... A pretty cheap and fun date if you ask me. As for wondering if I even prefer it to the Bentley... I'm pretty sure I do, but no, it's not because it's better. You'd be reading the babbling of a crazy man if I told you that... Oh wait, if you've been reading a while you probably already know that. Anyway, why is it better, even though it's not better? The thing is having the Bentley is a bit stressful, I worry about it all the time, I worry that someone will damage it, and I've got this niggling feeling at the back of my mind that at some point it might decided to go off with a pop, and cost me far more than I can afford. But the StreetKa, despite costing me far too much is pretty much stress free. If somone damaged it, well, I'd be irritated, but I guess it would just add to the patina, and if it goes off with a pop, how much would a second hand engine from a 1.6 Ka, or maybe 1.7 Puma cost me? I realise that the StreetKa is essentially rubbish in comparisson to the Bentley, it's not as big, it's not as beautiful, the interior isn't as warm, cossetting, and comfortable, it's far FAR from luxurious, it doesn't have that presence on the road, and it doesn't have the brutal power. But it's fun, it's nimble, it's nippy, and it's such a laugh to drive. Plus I love it's Dr Frankenstien looks, and the way I can take it out driving all night and it doesn't cost me the Earth. Every time I go out in it I'm grinning like an idiot, and when I come home I like it more and more. The Bentley is great, and I really like it, with the exception of it's fondness for the petrol station I like everything about it. But I doubt that I'll ever feel the same way about the Bentley as I do for this little thing. This little thing is just the best, and I love it!