New Car, Christmas Party & Shopping


It’s been a pretty eventful week.

As I’ve mentioned previously, we’ve been on the hunt for a new car. We had found one a couple of weeks ago, but during the final stages of negotiation we received a call from the salesman apologising because one of the other guys at his shop had accidentally sold the car to someone else. Now, I’ve accidentally put an Ikea cabinet together upside-down. I’ve even accidentally set my own face on fire doing flaming shots of Sambuca. But I’ve never accidentally sold a car. Given the magnitude of that car salesman’s accident, I’d hate to think of what disasters could occur if you gave him an allen key, some alcohol and a lighter.

So we missed out on that car, but just like our retarded dog that keeps falling off the couch every time she tries to eat her own tail – we didn’t give up.

We actually used the accidental car sales experience to hone our search and refine our criteria to be so specific, that there were very few cars that made the cut. Then on one fateful Thursday afternoon, as we were clicking the refresh button on like Michael J Fox on methamphetamine’s, a car popped-up that ticked all the boxes.

We nonchalantly gave the guy a call making-out like we just stumbled across his ad (knowing all too well that it had only been listed minutes earlier) and we casually joked about how coincidental it was that we called him so quickly.

The seller was a lovely old man, and quite a character. When we went to inspect the vehicle, he told us the reason he was selling the car was because he had purchased it as a surprise gift for his wife, but she didn’t like it because it was a bit too zippy for her. He then went on to explain that her favorite car was an old Toyota Tarago, which was a great car, but it had too many seats. His wife’s solution to the seat problem was filling them with six kids over the years and now he still has one of their adult children living at home and he can’t get rid of them. So to avoid such issues, his advice was to keep our car search to small vehicles.

We proceeded to inspect the car, kick the tyres (figuratively as the literal act would probably hurt my soft baby-like toes) and took it for a test drive. What was too small and zippy for his wife was the perfect size and power for us.

So background checks were done, offers and counter offers made, papers signed and before we knew it, we had a new car:


Then on Friday afternoon, we had our work Christmas party. To give you some background on our office dynamic, we share office space with a tech start-up company run by a very good friend I’ve known since high-school – ‘G’. He spent the last decade over in the UK and came back this year to start a new business. As part of his business, he works with a couple of other lads that both have British backgrounds. So I’ll affectionately refer to those guys from time-to-time as ‘The Brits’.

They’re awesome guys, but it seems their idea of a Christmas party and ours was a little skewed.

The Brit’s version of a Christmas party was to have a traditional Christmas lunch with turkey and ham. The sound of Christmas music playing in the background, surrounded by decorations and the whole thing taking place (at most) a few days before the jolly fat man is due to arrive.

Our part of the office has no decorations, we ordered Indian curry for lunch from a very tasty restaurant around the corner and the whole thing took place last Friday. So as far as the Brit’s were concerned, this wasn’t a Christmas party, it was more like November Curry day followed by copious amounts of drinking, darts, pool, a paper plane competition, some cocktails and dancing.

We did succumb to a little Christmas cheer as the girls drew a funny Christmas caricature of everyone in the office and the Brit’s put on songs from the Christmas UK singles charts.

Overall it was a fun night and I’m so proud to have such an awesome team. Here’s a pic of our motley crew:


Then the following day, while sporting a nasty hang-over, I thought it might be fun to go Christmas shopping. Ok, I didn’t think it would be fun, but was coaxed into the idea by E. This turned-out being no where near as painful as I was expecting. We not only got a bunch of awesome stuff for the kids, but I scored a pair of new shoes – they’re a little difficult to describe, but basically they’re grey suede brogue sneakers.

The other amazing thing that we discovered was a crazy Japanese store called Daiso where everything is $2.80. They have some of the most obscure items, many of which look like they could be used in questionable ways they may not have originally been designed for – and nearly all have broken English instructions or descriptions like “put on head nice good feeling well now happiness ensues”. You could literally lose yourself for a good hour or more just reading through all the packaging and trying to figure-out how many ways to use their various back scratching, floor mopping, massaging, hooked multi-lifestyle-tools (and yes, there is actually an item they have that fits most of that description). Still not sure what it does.

Then yesterday, I decided to bite the bullet and list my car for sale. Note, this was an intentional action as I still am not entirely sure how to accidentally sell a car 😛

As I’ve mentioned previously, my car isn’t in the best shape and needs a bit of work to get it up-to-scratch. So I got the mechanic next door to our office to have a look under the hood. As expected, there was about $1500 worth of work required just to get it road worthy.. and that didn’t include fixing any of the less essential items like the radio, minor dings, bread smell etc. etc.

The internets, mechanic and a couple of motoring enthusiast friends all basically said the same thing – the car is probably only worth a couple of thousand if I spent some money and time sprucing it up, so my best bet would be to sell it cheaply “as is” without a road worthy or safety certificate.

So I put an ad online with the expectations the car would be about as popular as a vacation to Somalia.

Much to my surprise, within minutes of the ad going live, calls and SMS’s started coming through thick and fast. It was as if Tiger Wood and Shane Warne merged mobile numbers. Within half an hour I had three people booked in to inspect the vehicle and ended-up selling it to the first bloke that saw it. He was a car dealer. Offered cash on the spot. He didn’t care that it needed a bit of mechanical work, nor did he care that the car needed a wash and still had McDonald’s wrappers on the floor.

The transaction was easier than I ever imagined and I feel comfortable knowing the vehicle went to someone aware of the potential issues plus has the ability to address those things. I would have felt bad selling it to some kid looking for a cheap first car given the work it needed.

So it’s been an eventful and exciting couple of weeks and I don’t expect the craziness to stop any time soon with Christmas only a few more weeks away.


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