My not-so-secret, ‘Dirty Little Secret’: Part one
A passionate Toyota Altezza owner discovers that the process of letting go of the things we love can often result in receiving more than expected in return …
By Wikipedia’s definition, a dilemma (Greek δί-λημμα “double proposition”) is a problem offering at least two solutions or possibilities, of which none are practically acceptable. One in this position has been traditionally described as “being on the horns of a dilemma”, neither horn being comfortable, “between Scylla and Charybdis”; or “being between a rock and a hard place”, since either objects or metaphorical choices are rough.
For this “Dirty Little Secret”, the dilemma was an opportunity presenting itself with no practical solution seemingly available to take advantage of this opportunity. This opportunity? Owning a part of Roadster history. Australian Roadster history, at least …
A few years ago, fellow enthusiast and friend, Kevin (known as Babalouie), decided to rebuild his White 1994 NA8 Roadster Clubman after having put it through its paces both as a track and a drift car. After a full rebuild, the NA8 eventually made its way interstate to another meticulous enthusiast and friend, Lachlan, where he continued the good work that Babs had started, taking the development of the car’s true JDM style even further. He also gave the car a new name after the potent Japanese spirit – SAKE.
At the beginning of 2010, Lachy came to a fork in the road and decided it was time to part with SAKE. Like most of us reading would know, this is a very hard decision to be made for any enthusiast who has ever put blood, sweat and tears into a project. But as the saying goes, “If you love something, be prepared to set it free”.
I approached Lachy the moment he hinted he was considering selling SAKE. Like a vulture to a dying bison, I had to ask the price. I asked without thinking of any of the dilemmas I would encounter if I were to successfully purchase SAKE.
Dilemma: After a month of toying with the idea, Lachy was forced (by himself) to advertise SAKE. Plenty of discussions followed between me, Babs and a few other friends about SAKE. A lot of people were interested in the car. This made me think hard and I worried that the opportunity to purchase was fading the more I pondered my decision. Questions that raced around my head were money, storage space, what to do with my current IS200 project car (The Banana), and WHY.
Money: The first time I had asked Lachy how much, I had paid off the credit card bills, and was slowly building up some savings. But a month after, quarterly mortgage payments and other bills from a spending spree on The Banana made those savings go into the red.
Storage Space: I already had two cars taking up my apartment’s allocated garage spots. I had promised a good friend (and Roadster Life contributor) that he could store his Roadster in my spare car spot for the 12 months. Adding SAKE would mean I either had to sell a car, or forfeit my promise.
My IS200 (The Banana): Those who knew me all responded the same way as soon as I announced I wanted to buy the NA8 - “Are you selling the Banana?” , “You can’t sell the Banana, you love it so much”.
WHY: The questions I kept asking in my head were, “Why do you want an MX5?”, “Why do you want a car older than the one I have now?”, “Why SAKE? Why this particular Roadster? Why not another MX5 in a more stock condition that would not only be cheaper but also something I could modify to my own tastes?”.
All these questions ran round and round in my head with the Benny Hill theme music playing in the background, until I couldn’t take it anymore …
I decided to start negotiating with Lachy. I laid out my situation and intent to purchase the Clubman openly and honestly to Lachy and eventually we negotiated a deal that saw the current SSR Mk2 wheels and Bride driver’s seat not included. After a few emails, we finally arrived at a price we were both happy with. While the negotiation was happening I also had to negotiate with myself; How the hell was I going to fund this?
The answer came from a fishing trip with my parents.
From that day of fishing I have changed my mindset on things we love — that letting go often means letting in another.
Part two of the Dirty Little Secret can be found here
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