Tuesday, February 27, 2007

How to be a millionaire


This morning I had to undergo a most traumatic experience - renewing my annual season ticket with First Great Western. I gave them so much money, I would officially be a millionaire if I lived in Vietnam. Or Venezuela. Or Indonesia for that matter. Okay, I've chosen some pretty weak currencies, I'll admit it, but I also looked for something for an equivalent price in the UK and came up with a nice 2000 Volkswagen Golf 1.6.
I have to say, it's tempting. Sometimes, the need to get back into a nice comfortable car and leave the freezing wet lateness behind is overwhelming. The stupid thing is that I do own a car. And I pay all the attendant costs that go with it. I spend hundreds of pounds on insurance, tax and maintenance every year and the thing sits on the roadside gathering bird poo, while I tramp about from platform five, to platform nine, and back again, trying to find a seat on a fast train from Reading to London.
Why on earth do I do this? Because the roads are congested, the car parking is non-existent and the fuel prices are inflated.
But I can't sell it. Because if I ever really need to go somewhere, I can't rely on the train. So I pay for the equivalent of a nice 2000 Volkswagen Golf 1.6 every year, for a service that doesn't work as it should.
I'm going to stop thinking about it now. It's enough to make a person sell up, move to Vietnam, and embark on a millionaire's spending spree that would put Victoria Beckham to shame.
I bet their trains work better than ours too.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

If you only keep the car 'just in case' or for the odd trip elsewhere you might want to look at hiring or these new share schemes - e.g. as mentioned by http://thegreenguy.typepad.com/thegreenguy/2007/02/why_my_collecti.html - though I haven't seen a share scheme covering Berkshire.

Richard said...

Or...if you don't like the Golf, you could always buy a BRAND NEW Peugeot 107, EVERY YEAR.

I'm tempted. Then I'll go for the custom paint job and put your "I hate First Great Western" logo on the bonnet.