Sweet memories

In Corona times, we all now spend more than enough time behind our laptops and in our homes. A delightful occasion to delve now in our old archives and finally give them a thorough cleanup. Of course, true gems are found. Like a photo my father took when I must have been about 7 years old, behind the wheel of a 1950 MG TD.

I just want to share this with you. It clearly shows that my love for cars started very early on. Actually, at the age of four I surprised my Dutch grandmother in Helmond with my knowledge about car makes. When there was a beautiful British limousine parked in the street of their home, I could whisper to her that this was an Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire. I already appreciated then as a very young boy that this was a very exceptional quality car.

The beautiful radiator of the Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire…

My deep love for British powerful cars with elegance and panache was born then. My grandmother’s daughter was married to an eye doctor Harry Donders, who owned then a black Austin A90 Westminster.

The A90 was remarkably compact and had some modernity about it… just look at the simple rear/indicator lights…

A remarkably austere interior for a British car I found, with Austin definitely having a good throw at some modernity.

The car itself was also remarkably compact.

The Austin logo was beautifully placed on the bonnet of the A 90…

But my heart was then already taken by Jaguar. The Mk 1 Saloon was totally awesome in my mind, and dreams. So as soon as I earned my first money, the Jaguar MK II was bought, as faithful readers know…

On the photo you see me then behind the wheel of this MG TD in front of my parent’s house. My father took the picture with his Rolleiflex with the fast 2.8 lens. I still own the camera, and here I took a photo of it today for this article.

My uncle, the brother of my father, is actually still is in good health and well into his nineties and had hired the car to drive it to our home for a visit. The Belgian cobblestones got the best of it during this trip, as the whole fuse board had fallen on the slender legs of his surprised wife, while speeding along on the Belgian roads!   

Hans Knol ten Bensel       

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