I see MINIs everywhere. I nod to the ones I see parked, or wave as they drive by. And I can’t stop thinking of my MINI. See, I am now part of a secret MINI driver’s society, and all it took was a glorious afternoon test driving one last Thursday, graciously lent to us by MINI Garage Melbourne, to celebrate the arrival of the youngest sibling, the MINI Countryman.
It was a fine sunny afternoon for tea, scones and motoring. Before we even stepped into our MINI, I was already conjuring my Britishness (l did spend a few childhood years in Oxford circa Margaret Thatcher). Our gracious hosts at the MINI Garage offered us some refreshments before leading our group to a line of waiting vehicles. My host quietly whispered that I was to drive the most powerful of them all, a MINI JCW, a rebellious and tidy-looking little bloke, black and red striped, all raring to go. Blimey, I was chuffed to bits.
Aha, you might now be wondering about how English the MINI is, now that it has a BMW engine. This is exactly the question my (German) plus one and myself set out to answer. We naturally decided that the best way to determine was to play our MINI British and German music, and see how it reacted to both – what his favourite bands where, and if it was more into Beatles, Punk or Kraftwerk. We started off in the 60’s (meaning the decade, not mph- the MINI would not go that slow): Cat Stevens, Beatles, David Bowie: moving forward rapidly in space, time and beat. We took a wrong turn in Frankston to the tune of Anarchy in the UK. Our MINI JCW roared as we made a quick getaway back to our itinerary, it was well wicked.
Our destination was the beautiful holiday town of Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula, for a VIP performance of Spiegel Zelt LIMBO. Arriving just in time for more refreshments before the show, which is just as amazing as Jenny wrote previously in her own review. We adjourned to the Sorrento Hotel, for a delicious meal as the sun set over the beach with other new members of our MINI drivers club, before the trip home and continuing das experiment. MINI was ambivalent about the continental music we offered: Rammstein and Kraftwerk. Verdict? Still mostly British in character, with the benefits of German disciplined engineering. Favourite bands? MINI was definitely a fan of The Sex Pistols, and The Who as well as a soft spot for … Mika – which was a bit unexpected.
We at The Plus Ones are all fans, and I wish I could spend every Thursday afternoon with my MINI along country roads, but as he reminded us by the way of The Rolling Stones – “You Can’t Always Get What You Want“. Sure – but I won’t forget our experience so soon.
Christian is an international man of mystery; lover of books, cats and the performing arts; moonlighting as a finance professional by day.
MINI Garage Melbourne
209 Kings Way, South Melbourne VIC 3205