As you can read here, Elias had always had trouble getting his father to actually listen to his real need, including buying him the car he wanted.
First Passage – Chapter 23: An Improvement
Then I had a surprise. One day, standing in the driveway under the sycamore trees at my parents’ home, was an Alfa Romeo. The previous year I had mentioned casually that I liked the Alfa Romeo Giuletta Spider, but I didn’t think my father had even been listening. But here in the autumn of the year I graduated from Harvard, when I had hoped to be On the Road, hitch-hiking my way to San Francisco with four thousand dollars in my pocket, I got an Alfa Romeo, gun metal gray with red leather seats.
Was my father’s timing just a little off? Had he regretted that he had not bought me a car to take to Harvard and now bought this one to make up for it?
The Spider was not as powerful as a Porsche, and less expensive, but much more of a sports-car than a Fiat. Like many Italian cars, it drove beautifully one day out of the month, the day you drove out of the shop. After that, it started releasing air from the cylinders when you changed gears so you could not get up any speed, and you could hear a little farting sound, which spoiled the image as well as the feeling. […]
Follow Elias’ road to his dream-car here