Cars Only Bring Peogle Trouble
Today any Chinese can enjoy the luxury of owning a private car–if he can afford it, that is. And to be able to afford it, you have first of all to pay a five or six figure sum to buy a machine. Even the toylike Polish midget Fiat costs something
like 20,000 yuan. Any decent car would cost ten times that much.
But however large this initial sum you have to pay, the real drain on your purse is yet to come, in the running and maintenance of the machine–the various taxes, the fuel, and of course the repairs. The last item especially is a bottomless
pit. Any single repair may cost you thousands. If your car is of foreign make and you have to change a spare part, then God help you!
The financial burden is not your only worry. When you buy a car, you are like an elderly.man who marries a young wife. You have to guard her jealously, and protect her from prowling wolves who are constantly at your gate. A famous violinist who bought a second-hand car last year had to buy a pair of binoculars at the same time too, because he had to watch the car from his window every few minutes. Not only the car itself, but accesories such as rear-view mirrors, batteries, even wheels are all objects of prey.
I once read about a man in Shanghai who had the luck to win a car in a savings’ lottery. Of course it was the cheapest of all cars, a Polish midget Fiat mentioned above. Nevertheless for the rnan who won it, it was the chance of a life time, and he could hardly believe in his own luck. But his joy was short-lived, for the troubles that followed were enough to put any man into utter despair.
... you certainly are off the chain now, fucking Red Man! Time has come, air's cold, hot's gone, ... it, because you know, time is the most essential thing, and those shoes man! those are not the same ... listen to your idiotic non-sense bullshit through all this time, Imperialism this, fascism that, your right, people' ... all, I've been waiting for this moment long time ago. I can see your fat ass standing on ...
First of all he couldn’t get a license plate. He was sent from place to place, and after months of running around and after having handed out around four thousand yuan ( the greater part of which as “good will gifts”) he finally becarr.e the proud legal owner of the car.
But his troubles were by no means over. Like the violinist, he found he had to guard his newly-wedded “bride” from all sorts of violations. In fact the whole family had to take turn s for the “night shift”, which meant sleep in the car to protect her from night prowlers. Our friend had the hardest time because he is a tall fellow with long limbs.For him to sleep in a toy-like midget car was literally a form of torture. When he clarnbered out of the car in the morning, he found he could hardly walk. Obviously things couldn’t go on like that and so in the end he found a place to park his car for the night-in a school about two bus-stops away. The distance was noth ing compared with the parking fee he had to pay the school every month.But the greatest inconvenience was the fact that he had to get his car out of the school before eight every morning when school starts.
With conditions as they are in our country, one may well wonder who would ever want to own a private car. According to officially published figures, there were over 4,000 private cars in Beijing at the beginning of this year. That’s a big leap from just over a hundred five years ago-a forty times increase. But in proportion to Beijing’s population, the figure is piteously low, probably the lowest compared to other capitals in the world.