For the love of Biltong don't call me a mechanic!

The first question that is undoubtedly falling from your lips, "What is this biltong you speak of?". This is a very important and much debated topic throughout the world. Any self respecting South African would know the answer but since most on this site aren't from the land where lions roam the streets, biltong is dried meat with spice. And I love it...

Now that's cleared up we can move on to the more pressing issue, mechanic vs restorer. Ever since I bought my Italian supercar (pictured above) and began fixing it, people have began to think of me as a mechanic. Aunties and Uncles fondly referring to me as the mechanic of the family, while a smile politely and try my best not to strangle them.

The first rule for being a mechanic is your name, it must be Nigel or Garry. Since mine is neither, it's proof that I most definitely am not a mechanic. The second rule is that mechanics thrive in grease, rust, overalls and are commonly overheard saying, "I cant wait to get my nails dirty Garry." Since my two least favorite things involving cars are oil and rust, its strike two for Nigel.

Nigel

Lastly, mechanics can fix large volumes of cars on a daily basis, which is really cool but I think that it dulls the passion and makes you see every car as just another machine needing a fix. Compare all of this to a restorer and the vast gap is evident. Restorers take large amounts of time to complete a single project because they strive for perfection, one car at a time. I am busy restoring my '75 Fiat 132 and it will probably take 30-40 years, just to clean the engine...

If you could do one thing, do me the favour of NOT calling me a mechanic. Rather see me as someone who is passionate about the car, not fixing it. I fix my car because my vision for it in the future makes the dirty fingernails worth it. Sorry Garry you're not winning, not today...

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