Monochrome Monday. The crossing at Catcott is temporarily blocked as the 8.52 Templecombe to Highbridge passes through the gates. Young sign writer and Roman army battle re enactment fanatic, Albertus Titling, waits patiently in his Morris ‘Woody’ estate car for the gates to open, for today he’s heading to Cheddar to repaint a sign on one of the touristy cheese shops.
For those viewing in monochrome, the car is a sort of sage green colour and somewhat faded due to sunlight taking its anger out on the cellulose paint. The varnish on the wooden frame is starting to peel as well. But we used to like dull faded colours in olden times, it sort of reflected the austerity of the era, the stiff upper lip and reserved nature of the clenched buttock whispering aspiring middle classes who shuddered at the idea of any flamboyance. That was only for Americans.
Owning one of these cars was rather like owning a wooden boat - something only really for the enthusiast. Most British cars from the era requiring a very proactive ownership if they were to last more than 3 years before completely rotting away. But unlike today’s vehicles, all you needed was body filler, a hammer and an imperial socket set to keep one on the road. And of course a set of feeler gauges to tweak the distributor points, which from my experience of owning a couple vintage MG cars back in the day, tended to need adjustment every hundred or so miles - and usually on the verge of the Maidenhead bypass at rush hour.
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