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Know Your Car Basics 101: Car, Not Bus – Handling Suspensions

car truck

(This is how some relatives see my car at certain times – Sometimes I wish I could shout “I am not driving bus lah!”. Image source: SOS SAHEL)

A couple of days ago, my car suspensions took a heavy pounding – all because my mom decided to be very generous.

We were planning to go to the temple – me, my wife, the “big boss”, of course, and my mom. We decided to take my wife’s nimble Viva since it is just nice for the 4 of us (considering the big boss is no longer the small baby that everyone perceives him to be. He needs his space and his MP3s).

At the 11th hour, as I woke up from afternoon slumber to take my shower, I realised one of my aunties had come over to the house – intending to follow us to the temple. We had no idea of having anyone else following us at the last minute and certainly have not informed others. And just when we were about to drive out, my Dad got dressed up and was waiting to follow us – it has been some time since he last went to the temple and suddenly decided to join in (after persistently coaxed by the big boss who is very, very close with his grandpa).

When we saw him, we knew that we needed to abandon the idea of taking the Viva (5 adults and 1 kid would be very challenging inside the cramped Viva). I decided to take my car which is bigger (and more powerful than the Viva, hehe) – there was no other choice but having 3 heavy adults and 1 kid at the back to create a wreck on my rear suspensions.

Despite having new spring coils, the car just dropped down at the back and as I was driving, I swear I heard the tires grazing the body most of the time. My heart almost died out whenever we pass through a pothole – the rebound action of the spring and the suspension created a loud noise. Despite that, we managed to go to the temple and back home in one piece. I was so relieved when everyone got out of the car.

I just hope that there are no more unplanned guests coming up to the house for a last-minute ride. Don’t get me wrong – it is not that I do not want to give anyone a lift – in fact, I am more than happy to give someone a lift.

When we were small and we did not have a car at home, we always took relieve that our relatives decided to give us a lift to the whole family – my parents and my siblings. There are times they had to make a couple of trips to ensure they got their own family members and ours from A to B and then from B back to A. It was no easy feat those days when no everyone had a car at home.

So, these when relatives asked us for a lift, we are so ever willing but it would be better if we know that they are coming (instead of showing up at the 11th hour). If we know that they are coming, it is easier for us to arrange the transport – perhaps we can arrange for a bigger car (or van as we did in one instance) or getting several cars to go in a convoy and not cramp all in one car.

This is not a quest to set a new world record – most people in one car – mind you! It is getting from A to B as comfortably and safely as possible.

Giving someone a lift is not the issue but getting to know that I am giving someone a lift at the very last minute is.

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