I reached the bottle bank, and as I started to offload another hundred quid's worth of green glass, what should pull in behind me but, yes, you guessed it. It wasn't a dead ringer - red rather than beige, the souped-up 1000cc OHV version - but I wasn't complaining. I congratulated the owner, who was, he told me, eighty-five. This was his fourth or fifth Minor, he thought; he bought them cheap, had them restored and kept them for a few years, then sold them at a modest profit. 'Wonderful machine,' I suggested, not quite meaning it. 'Yes,' he said. 'It's my life, really.'
For some reason, I felt old and young at the same time.