Sydney, Australia 1973.
“Will you accept forty dollars for it?” I asked.
“Err, yeah, OK then, give me the money and you can take it"
I pulled out an envelope full of one-dollar notes from my coat pocket. I’d been working as a part-time taxi driver in Sydney and ended up with a large amount of one-dollar bills. I started counting and the amount came to $39 dollars. I asked him again.
“I’m sorry about this but I thought I had forty. It seems I’ve counted it wrongly and only have thirty-nine dollars. Will you take thirty-nine dollars?"
“For heaven's sake, mate, you drive a hard bargain. Count it again, maybe you missed one.”
I counted the money again and it came to thirty-nine. I dropped the bundle of notes on the table in front of him. He looked up, picked up the cash and counted thirty-nine dollars. I stood looking at him from the other side of his kitchen table. His wife stood leaning against the wall, an apron tied around her waist. She’d come out of the kitchen where she was preparing dinner. Neither looked happy. She looked at me with piercing eyes, reminding me of a teacher I had in primary school.
“OK then, here’s the registration papers, I’ll write you out a receipt,” he said.
He went over to their living room sideboard and opened a drawer and out popped a pile of papers. He searched around amongst the paper and junk, eventually finding a pen and pad. Then he sat back down at the table and wrote.
“Sold, as seen, one 1953 model Morris Minor for the total sum of $39.”
I'd bought my very first Morris Minor.