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  • Chris Statham


I have just come back from a camping trip with my family, 10 days around southern Malawi and in which we visited friends, relations, national parks, and sandy beaches.

While my adopted home country might not be well-known to many, it really is a great place for a visit not least as the distances need to go from giraffes to mountain to watching a rhino in the light of a campfire after seeing a glorious sunset can be measured in hours rather than days (as is the case in many African countries so large are their landmasses).

However, none of this can be done without the assistance of our four-wheeled friend, the car, and in which I’m reminded of my first, back in 1999, a white 1.6 Vauxhall Astra.

I get keys to my future, to independence, to life, keys to my 1.6 Vauxhall Astra. 14 years and two versions old, but I’m ecstatic, possibilities endless. No more trains, buses or borrowing the car from mum; this is my shagging wagon . . . if only on the back seat of my chariot.

Never mind 0-60, my White Lightening is a teleporting vehicle, transporting me from mundanity to freedom, to life.

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