It is funny what stirs the memories ~ no funny jokes at my expense please!
Well it will be our 40th Wedding Anniversary this year and Jenny and I were looking at some photos of our wedding and our lovely MG TF in particular. We went away in it, plastered in shaving foam and towing tin cans and all manner of rubbish. The shaving foam even bleached the paintwork in places. We toured parts of France in 1972, with a tent belonging to Jenny’s parents that you could fit the TF in and service it!
We started talking about the car and the great times that we had had before the second child arrived and made her (the car that is) seriously impractical for a run-about. To think of it ~ there were no safety belts and our precious son merely went in his carry cot on the rear parcel shelf ~ no straps. Safety conscious cotton wool man would have us locked up in jail and have thrown away the key ! I should add that all of us behaved like this in those days (1973 ish).
This was a car with a performance like one of the original Minis, so not so startling, but it would corner on rails, could be slid about with gay abandon (think of the old original meaning of gay not new gay please youngsters!) and was real fun. It could be driven flat out all of the time, and mostly was. A year after I bought the car in 1967 I was driving down a long hill, with the windscreen folded flat, and in top gear, I over revved the engine, breaking every big end bearing ~ hmm ~ very costly! I recently drove a friend of mine’s MG TD, same vintage, who had his car at the same time that I had mine, in fact it was how we met. I was terrified of it, slightly vague steering, hard bouncy ride and quite noisy, didn’t stop like a modern car, quite old fashioned really. I managed to get up to 30 or 40 miles an hour, which seemed quite fast enough. There is no doubt about it we are completely spoilt and isolated from reality in our nice new modern cars, however I am not convinced that the overall journey times are any different today.
Jenny was driving to work one day around the North Circular in London, near to Brent Cross, and one of the rear wheels fell off. She rang me to say so, and I said no no no it must have been just the hub cab, but no she was right. Fortunately a couple of burly lorry drivers help my diminutive wife to park the MG safely on the side of the road out of harms way. It was easy to repair, simply pop the wheel and hub back on, tighten the nut and replace the missing split pin ~ no bovver mate, done by lunch time and no questions asked!
So what happened to our TF? We sold it in 1975/6 to an American serviceman based at RAF Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire. I recall that we were paid £980. It was sufficient to buy Jenny a relatively new Morris 1000 Traveller, build a garage, and install a new kitchen. We thought that it had been exported to the USA, and it might well have been, as the records in the DVLA suggest that it was first registered in 1990. So did it go to the States and return in 1990? We know that it is still registered in the UK and that the tax disc expires in 2012. So where is it, who owns it? Does anybody know?