What I’m talking today about is a world that no one could ever really know about until they live it. It’s the world where mums virtually live in their cars and family friendly cars become top of their list.
Yes, while most everyone else is sleeping, showering, waiting at the bus stop, eating breakfast or flicking through the daily news on their iPads, there’s an army of mums in cars. And when you see what these mums achieve in their cars, it’s no wonder the number of SUVs on the road has gone through the roof. Trouble is, they still fall short when it comes to being family friendly cars.
Right now, I’m in the carpark of our local swimming pool. My oldest son has Water Polo training along with 40 other kids from school so the car park is a teaming mass of mums! Mums doing the drop off in PJs, mums about to squeeze in 5 times around the oval as the only exercise they’ll probably do this week and mums in business suits. The universal truth about each of these mums is that they have surrendered to the fact that they have, and will have for a long time to come, a very special relationship with their cars. But they are very selective about which car they’ll have these relationships with – they’ll only be turned on if said cars are purpose built family friendly cars.
When most people think a ‘tradie’s car’ they think of a ute – whether they’re supercharged V8 utes, utes that roll off cliffs and rise out of the sea or utes that are completely functional with purpose built roof racks and lockable storage boxes, they’re tools of the trade. If it’s not a ute, it’s a van – racks and trays, hooks for cable and a thousand compartments all built to service the needs of the tradesman who will spend a huge part of their day in them.
The thing about most mums, particularly if you’re the mum of a brood of busy, sporty, creative kids is that we all live in our cars. Yes that’s right live in them. From before the sun comes up to well after the sun goes down, we are in them and giving them a workout. Take right now for instance; the sun is only just saying hello and there’s a mum beside me standing at the boot of her car wrangling post swimming training knots into a pony tail while said daughter shovels a bowl of cereal in before draining a juice box.
The milk was in a drink bottle and the cereal bowl will no doubt rattle around the car all day. How handy it would be to have a tiny fridge (no not the cumbersome camping style fridge that takes up half my Landcruiser’s bootspace) but a little fridge with a proper door. Under that could be a small drawer or two – the perfect spot for a couple of plastic cups, three bowls and a few spoons. The drawer under that for me, would be home to various hair clips, brushes, an asthma puffer. I ask for this little compartment in the back because by the time you have log books, GPS, CDs etc in the front compartments, there’s no room left.
Tomorrow, I’ll be in the car until 8.30pm – gymnastics pick up. How nice it would be to fully recline for a quick catch up powernap! I’ve actually seen mums at swimming training who’ve realised that rather than drop off at 5.00am, rush home and then get back for pick up at 7.00am, it’s easier to climb into the back seat with a pillow and the picnic blanket and catch up on the sleep mums always need!
So all power to the car manufacturers who are realising that mums are the ones who start the conversation about which car they want. We love the handbag hooks, the split fold rear seats, the wireless headphones and the ‘easy to wipe down’ leather (even faux leather we don’t care) seats. It’s the little things that make a big difference to us.
How long do you spend in your car everyday? What would you change/add/subtract if you could?
A big thanks to ephimera-inc.com for this fabulous thought in the form of some drink coasters I received! They are a constant source of a good laugh.