Pete's congas


Another of my jobs at the garage was delivering cars and driving them back from auctions. All went well until I bumped into a couple of friends of mine outside an auction one day. As we chatted away one of them handed me a spliff of excellent black hashish, which went straight to my head.

At the end of the auction I was asked to drive back this sleek new BMW that the garage had purchased. It was only when I jumped in the car and discovered that it was an automatic that I freaked.

At first I refused to drive it back; I’d never driven an automatic car in my life before and I was still feeling stoned. Everyone assured me that it was easy and I’d have no problems, the car started with a throaty roar and with great trepidation I set off.

The auction was held in a basement and there was a long steep ramp leading up out of the place and onto the road. As I approached the ramp I hit the brakes, at least that’s what I meant to do. Unfortunately, I got the accelerator pedal instead, and smoke poured off the back wheels as the car shot up the ramp at about a hundred miles an hour.

The engine had so much torque I was thrown back in my seat. It seemed like my foot was glued to the pedal, I just couldn’t prise it off the floor. I braced myself as the car hit the top of the ramp and flew through the air. It landed nose first with an almighty crash, half way across the road. Luckily I managed to find the brakes and the car screamed to a halt just before it hit the wall.

There were a couple of young ladies sitting in a car nearby with an astonished look on their faces, I guess the whole thing must have looked quite spectacular from where they were sitting. I calmed my nerves and decided to set off again. I can only think that inadvertently I must have changed gear, because the next thing I knew the car shot backwards and bounced off a lamppost. I was panicking by now and I tried to knock the car out of gear, but it lunged forward removing the wing of a parked car as it went.

Screaming to a halt, I stuck it in reverse; the car shot backwards straight into the lamppost again. I repeated this manoeuvre several times until I finally turned off the ignition.

I jumped out to check the damage; both cars were a mess, there were bits of metal and broken glass scattered everywhere. By this time crowds had gathered to see what all the commotion was.

Everyone was laughing, I felt such a fool. My employer couldn’t believe his eyes; the immaculate BMW he’d just purchased now looked like someone had attacked it with a lump hammer, not to mention the state of the other car. “What the hell happened, Pete?” he asked incredulously. “I told you I can’t drive bloody automatics”, I growled. The whole thing cost me a fortune in insurance. After that I decided to retire.

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