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Change August 19, 2006

Posted by Subramanya in Uncategorized.

There was a time, not very long ago,when the very thought of an automobile would put me in an ecstatic mood, when I counted Mercs on the streets of Delhi, when I mugged up engine displacements and prices of cars I would probably never lay my eyes on let alone touch or drive them. I remember this once, when we were living in Lonavla, I touched a Merc (This was when Mercs were still rare in India) and I refused to wash that hand for the next few days. I read and reread automobile magazines, caring naught for date or relevance. I filled up drawing books with vain attempts at designing the next big thing in automobiles,all of which my mother claimed looked like banana peels.Then I would go on and on explaining why it was significantly different from the earlier drawing of the Banana peel.

I read everything I could read about automobiles. About engines, about designers, about designers, about the automobile manufacturers, everything. The first thing I did when I was introduced to the internet was to visit the websites of every one of the automobile companies whose names I knew with special attention given to the Ferraris and the Maseratis of the world. I even decided that I would end up as an automobile engineer and be the next Ferdinand Porsche, Alec Issigonis or Bela Barenyi.

I even took up Mechanical Engineering.

And here I am now, sleeping fast in B slot class, Internal Combustion Engines. In the past the topic would have brought a tear to my eye, but now it just causes me to yawn. I see the powerpoint presentation on the screen and wonder when the 50 minutes are going to be up. On friday, I went to the IC Engines Lab for the demo and did not pay any attention to what was going on. Here I was in this place with so many of the things that I had worshipped for so long and the only thought that came to my mind was wishing the 50 minutes over.

It is not that I have lost interest totally in the world of automobiles. I still keep in touch with what is happening in the “industry”. I read the car magazines, the car websites; I try to catch the occasional episode of Top Gear. But it is somehow different, the passion is dead and gone. I worshipped Jeremy Clarkson, I still do… But the reasons have changed. Things have changed and I am poorer for it.