‘Honor was actually conceived in this cor?’ ‘We should push it off a cliff’

Ross O’Carroll-Kelly: Sorcha gets teary about her old Rav4 in Dundrum cor pork

I taught Sorcha to drive in the Rav4. She insisted on staying in first gear between the speed bumps

I taught Sorcha to drive in the Rav4. She insisted on staying in first gear between the speed bumps

 

Sorcha’s cousin Keeva is getting married for the third time in 13 years. Not that I’m judging her. I’m only mentioning it because it’s how we ended up in House of Fraser in Dundrum, picking out a present for her latest Big Day.

It turns out that Sorcha has been keeping a list of all the wedding gifts we’ve bought and received over the years, just to know whether we’re financially up or down in our relationships with individual friends.

Hey, it’s Killiney – it’s how we do things.

She has a little chuckle to herself as we’re queuing to hand over the plastic. “You know,” she goes, looking up from her phone, “we could actually tell the story of Keeva’s disastrous relationship history through the evolution of the Nespresso machine.”

I’m there, “I’m not with you.”

“I’m just saying, when she married Gary in 2005, we bought her the Krups Pixie in red. Then when she married Anlon in 2012, we bought her the Le Cube in titan grey. And now it’s 2018 and she’s marrying his brother Stephan and we’re buying her the Sage Creatista Plus in stainless steel.”

The machines have been getting dearer as Keeva’s marriages have been getting shorter and I’m not convinced that we’re helping by throwing coffee at the problem.

Sorcha links my orm as I’m lugging this thing back to the cor and I can tell she’s thinking how lucky she is to have a marriage that lasted – even though we’ve been separated seven times, twice legally, in that same 13-year period.

Anyway, we’re walking through the cor pork when she suddenly stops dead in her tracks and goes, “Oh! My! God!”

At first I think she’s realized her mistake and is about to suggest exchanging the machine for one of the cheaper ones without the milk frother? But it ends up not being that at all. She’s staring at an old black SUV with a 98D reg and it’s as if she’s seen a ghost. And, in a way, she kind of has?

“Ross, look!” she goes. “It’s my old Rav4!”

I’m there, “It couldn’t be!”

But she’s right. I instantly recognise it. I’m there, “I can’t believe it’s still running.”

And then, just like that, the memories stort flooding back. Sorcha goes, “You taught me how to drive in this cor – on Avondale Road! Do you remember?”

Oh, I remember. She kept insisting on driving in first gear between the speed bumps. She kept screaming, “What’s the point in going up through the gears if I’m just going to have drop down to first again before the next ramp?”

Sorcha smiles at me. “I used to drive us to UCD in it,” she goes. “And – oh my God – do you remember the night my dad caught us doing you-know-what in it?”

I run my hand along the side of the front passenger door, suddenly feeling the same way about it that Han Solo feels about the Millennium Falcon. I’m there, “Jesus, you can still feel the outline of the bullet holes.”

“I was never 100 per cent happy with that panel beating job. Oh my God, I’ve just thought of something else! Honor was actually conceived in this cor?”

Listen to Ross

“We should get a priest to perform an exorcism on it, then push it over a cliff!”

“Ross, don’t be mean! And then, nine months later, we drove her home from Holles Street in it. We drove her to her Christening in it. Her first day in school, Ross – we drove her in this!”

Suddenly, I notice that she’s becoming teary. I put my orm around her shoulder to comfort her – like I’ve seen men do in romantic comedies.

She goes, “I’m sorry for getting emotional.”

I’m like, “Hey, it’s cool.”

It’s not. It’s embarrassing. This is Dundrum. Anyone could see us.

I’m there, “Do you want me to buy you a new cor?”

She goes, “I’m not crying because I want a new cor, Ross! I’m crying because I don’t know where all those years have gone!”

I lean against the cor and suddenly – fock! – the alorm goes off.

It’s like, “MARP! MARP! MARP! MARP! MARP! MARP! MARP!”

I’m there, “Okay, let’s get out of here!”

Except we don’t get a chance to walk away because all of a sudden this girl – I’m guessing in her early 20s – appears out of nowhere. She goes, “Oh my God, were you trying to steal my cor?”

Sorcha’s like, “Yours? Do you mind me asking where you got it?”

“My dad bought it for me for my 18th,” she goes, then she uses her key fob to switch off the alorm.

Some dude then arrives on the scene – possibly the boyfriend. He’s there, “What’s going on?”

The girl goes, “I don’t know. These two randomers set off my cor alorm.”

Sorcha’s like, “We’re not randomers. This used to be my cor? It was actually my first ever cor. I just saw it and I got a bit emotional, that’s all.”

Suddenly, I hear myself go, “How much do you want for it?”

The girl is like, “Excuse me?”

“I want to buy it. Name your price.”

But the dude is like, “You can’t sell it, Vanessa. How are we going to get to UCD every day?”

The girl goes, “He’s right. And it was a birthday present. No amount of money could persuade me to port with it.”

I’m there, “What if I said five grand?”

She’s there, “I’ll just check is the logbook in the glove box.”

While they go off to do that, Sorcha pulls me to one side.

“We’re not doing this,” she goes. “Ross, look at them!”

I’m there, “What? Do you think they’d have taken three?”

“No,” she goes, “they’re us, Ross! They’re me and you 20 years ago!”

I look at them. She’s possibly right – although, in fairness, I think I’m a lot better looking than the dude.

“We’ve changed our minds!” Sorcha tells them.

The girl’s like, “What?”, probably having already spent the moo in her head.

Sorcha goes, “Enjoy it. I hope it’s as good to you as it was to us.”

Then we throw the Nespresso machine in the boot of our car and we drive home in silence, thinking about happy times and all the stories that our cors could tell if only they could talk.

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