As we were meandering back to Prakash after a day of shopping—one shop for chip, cokes and cookies,
one for bread, another for the chicken sausages we like for breakfast (No ONE-STOP-SHOPPING in India)—when all of a sudden…OHMYGOSH there was the cutest little car, with its chubby-cheeked smile.
“Baas baas—stop, stop,” I yelled at Premdas. Fumbling to find my camera and get the window rolled down. Loren said, “Daave, Daave—left, left. (A U-turn.)
As I took the first picture from the car, I saw a man . . .who had been sitting on a worn-out wooden plank bench in front of a pitiful little tea stall. . .stand, proud as a peacock. I motioned to him and then to the car and with the typical waggle of his head I knew it was his car. I said, “Come on Loren, let’s get out and see the car up close.”
The man, along with two very enthusiastic friends came over to the car. I asked if I could take pictures, he stood with the “official” proud pose in front of the car and then introduced himself as Ashok Deosinghani.
Immediately he turned and began rummage around in the car, as the friends proceeded to excitedly tell us the history of the car. It is a 1939 8 Austin with a single owner. I said, “He is not old enough to have been the original owner.” Oh well, it was his father who purchased the car. But just think about it, in 1939 inside English India, he had to be fairly well off to have afforded this car. Ashok finally turned around and offered us “sweets”. . . another Indian tradition. Actually, they were quite good.
As we learned, yesterday, the car rolled away with top honors in the Nagpur JCI Orange City & Hitavada Vintage Car Rally. It was adjudged the winner of the rally from the Vintage Car category, the most prestigious category. The car successfully completed the near 40-km rally in first place. In India if you win a prize or it is your birthday, or whatever honor, YOU must treat everyone to “sweets.”
As we closely examined the car, from its hidden miniature stepnee (spare tire)
to folding back the petite bonnet (hood) to see the teeny 4-cylinder engine,
Loren could hardly contain himself. The car wasn’t perfect, (for India it was great) but what a treat to see at the end of a long day.
Finally getting back into our car, we realized that the window was down and the car was unlocked. In all the excitement we had forgotten a hard and fast rule of India—do not leave your car unlocked! Oh well, my purse and Loren’s briefcase were untouched. PTL
Continuing on to Prakash, as we crossed over the Bun, God gave a glimpse of his glory in the reflection of the sun in the lake.
Thank you again for your prayers and support
|* Some names have been changed to protected the privacy and safety of the characters in my stories.