A Car - More than simply a mode of transport, the aftokinito can be split into certain specific groups
More than simply a mode of transport, the aftokinito can be split into certain specific groups ;
1. The Mersendez or Mercedes.
Ranging from the gross overpowered super-limousines of the rich to the more basic models of the genre.
These are bedecked with plastic stick-on spoilers and skirts, multiple foglights, ear rupturing stereo systems and foot-high stickers that read "MERSEDES 190E" in a variety of colours and typefaces with fluorescent representations of the Mercedes star in case you missed the ones supplied by the manufacturers.
These are intended to argue that it may only be an ageing 190E but the owner wishes you to know that he knows it is not a 450SEC, however it is still totally a Mercendez.
Plus he had more than enough money not only to buy it, but also even to fritter on customising it into the nether pits of automotive hell.
2. The "thiplowgambinon".
Described more fully elsewhere, this was the national car of Cyprus until rising fuel prices and the disappearance of the subsidy for this allegedly akrotiko or agricultural vehicle meant owners were no longer subsidised in terms of low road tax. Many of these now dangalakes are for sale at low prices for anyone foolish, rich or amballados enough to buy them.
3. The Panjero.(Pajero)
Marketed in the UK as the "Shogun", this 4 wheel drive Range Rover/Jeep Cherokee substitute is a middle class status symbol as compared to the more egalitarian "thiplowgambinon" although equally subject to the problems attending big, thirsty vehicles..
The major selling point to these tall, all terrain bus-like lemons is that they allow the occupants to look down on other road users literally as well as figuratively.
4. The Maz.
Lesser Japanese/European vehicles that are imported second hand from Japan or latterly the UK
Frequently (but not invariably) wives of Mercendez or Panjero owners drive these with an arrogant lack of ability and/or attention that they believe makes them appear brisk and capable. Often you will find one or more toddlers standing on the transmission tunnel between the front seats under even poorer control than the car.
They may also be found in the reckless hands of aggressive under-age "drivers" who treat them more like dodgem cars than the real thing. Commonly they are gifts from their parents on the child's coming of age or else starting his national service at 18 years. Presumably the proud parents consider a violent death in an RTA (Road Traffic Accident) an acceptable alternative to conscription.
These vehicles are frequently referred to by mispronounced abbreviated versions of their maker's names, a common technique for demonstrating the owner's laid-back fashion-consciousness.
This well-worn technique has its drawbacks, however.
The tale is told of the lady who offered to buy her husband a new Maz. A nice big shiny one with leather seats and everything. He indulged her gracefully and off she went to clinch the deal. After a week or two she rang him at the office to tell him it had arrived and she had taken delivery and, if anything, it was even bigger and nicer than she remembered. Her husband came home to find himself the proud owner of a brand new top of the range C£75,000 Maserati.
We are given to understand that he was somewhat distressed.
5. The saravallo, or "rot-box".
These decrepit vehicles with their bedraggled drivers are a major hazard for two reasons.
a) These cars tend to be from a distant time when sheet steel rather than contoured plastic was the order of the day and endurance rather than performance was the ideal.
Geriatric Volvos, Austin A40 vans and Russian tractors - they may be falling to bits, but once you get them going they could chew up a motorway bridge without difficulty or indeed injury to themselves.
Compounded with the inevitable lack of brakes, steering, lights, tread on the tyres and the lack of visual acuity/intellect of the driver, this property of resilience is regrettable.
The introduction of the MOT (epithiorisee) in Cyprus has made little difference to the owners of these vehicles as since they had no road tax or license in the first place, why should one more regulation to be ignored slow them down?
b) Regardless of whether the vehicle could pass an MOT - the driver would probably not.
The driver is usually either on the verge of collapse due to advancing age or else a mindless 14 year old showing off to his schoolmates.
Thus they are either effectively or else literally deaf and blind with all the road sense of a hedgehog on a motorway.
They pull unhesitatingly out into fast moving streams of traffic at a dogged if juddery five m.p.h. (8 k.p.h.) secure in the belief that only a fully laden concrete mixer or perhaps a train can harm them.
Unfortunately, in view of what they are driving, they are probably correct.
Naturally they are neither taxed nor insured as the drivers licence either never existed or else expired in 1962. A current MOT is just an impossible dream.
Furthermore, if you try to take these drivers to court the police will try to discourage you on the basis that it is androbee as they are too old/young/confused/stupid/disinterested to understand the consequences of their actions.
Your multiple traumas and mangled car will be considered moot*.
*Moot - of little or no practical value or meaning.