The Woman in the Red Car…

“Red has guts …. deep, strong, dramatic. A geranium red. A Goya red … to be used like gold for furnishing a house … for clothes, it is strong, like black or white.”


For those of you who have been following my ups and downs here on Beyond the Flow for awhile, you’ll know that I’ve had some car troubles over the last couple of months. These began with a nasty scrape in the supermarket car park and was following up with driving into a concrete divider in a car park which cracked the radiator and our red Nissan Pulsar was written off. For those of you who appreciate a bit of humour, I say that I took my son to the Emergency Department but my car didn’t make it home alive. My husband bought a Subaru Forester and we all really loved that car. However, I think it was only two weeks after we bought it, that I got caught in a hail storm and the car is covered in dents and everyone else we know, has had their cars written off. So, we were back to the online auctions and that’s when my husband stumbled across an Alfa Romeo 159. I can’t remember what year is was made and I struggled to remember the 159 part, but the trait I never lost sight of, was that is was red. An absolutely luscious red that makes you want to go and put on your tap shoes and dance on the table.

“There is a shade of red for every woman.”

-Audrey Hepburn

rowena alfa patonga 2

I need to brush up on my modelling skills.

However, it wasn’t just the colour that lured me in. It is Italian and oozes with Italian style and pizazz. Indeed, the Italians invented pizazz. This included a leather interior. I have always wanted a sports car, and while this is technically classified as a family sedan, this Italian sedan has nothing to with being sensible, responsible and did I mention anything about being dowdy? Not on your life. In other words, my Red Alfa, who in typical Australian fashion, could well be named “Blue” is my midlife crisis, post-disability and chronic illness mobile.


Look who popped out of my sunroof!    Photo Geoff Newton

Although the car actually arrived home on Friday, I wanted to wait and get some good photos incorporating our beautiful local scenery rather than photographing it while it was simply parked in our driveway. While I clearly need more experience posing as a photo model, we haven’t turned out too badly and didn’t crack the lens.


The pelican didn’t seem that interested in my new car.

On our first photo stop, we drove over to Patonga about a fifteen minute drive away. Being a Sunday during the January Summer school holidays, there were no parking spots at the beach or near the wharf and so we meandered around through the back streets until we found a spot on the Hawkesbury River side and there was a stunning pelican swimming back and forth doing its rounds.


The backwaters of Patonga, NSW.

We also thought we’d head over to Koolewong on Brisbane Waters to photograph the car in front of the Imagine Sign. Based on the game of Scrabble, IMAG_NE features large letter pieces which spell out the word “IMAGINE”, with a space where the second “I” would be and invites the community to interact with the sculpture to complete the word.

Created by Australian visual artist and creative producer, Emma Anna, the artwork originally exhibited at Bondi’s famous Sculpture by the Sea in 2008, and has since featured around the world including at Denmark’s inaugural Sculpture by the Sea in 2009.

I think the sculpture was installed on the Gosford Waterfront towards the end of 2016 and yet I’ve never stopped and photographed it, which really is rather extraordinary when you think of the vast myriad of things I have photographed. I don’t often drive into Gosford so it’s probably a case of out of sight, out of mind. However, I’ve always loved it. Not only do I love to imagine, but I also love Imagine by John Lennon.


Let me reassure you the car was stationary when these photos were taken. Photo: Geoff Newton.

Needless to say, the kids are expecting to be driven to school in the Alfa, instead of the bomb which usually gets parked at the station. We’ll have to see.

Lastly, I’ll leave you with some of my favourite driving songs:

Lastly, as I was just wrapping up with a Google search for “red car” to see what turned up, up popped The Wiggles hit:   The Big Red Car, which dare I say it, has to rate as a driving song and has certainly been a big hit. It just wasn’t quite the driving song I was hoping for:

Toot Toot, Chugga Chugga, Big Red Car
We’ll travel near and we’ll travel far
Toot Toot, Chugga Chugga, Big Red Car
We’re gonna ride the whole day long
Murray’s in the back seat
Playing his guitar
Murray’s in the back seat
Of the Big Red Car
The Wiggles: Big Red Car
I’m not sure that the Wiggle’s Big Red Car is a good place to finish up, but c’est la vie. What do you think about my new set of wheels? What are a few of your favourite driving songs? When it comes to what I usually listen to in the car, it’s usually the local radio station or a CD like David Bowie. I do like listening to him in the car. Ed Sheerin’s another but I usually hear him on the radio. That reminds me of beautifully moving ballad: Perfect.
Anyway, I’m actually heading off this time.
Best wishes,

13 thoughts on “The Woman in the Red Car…

  1. Prior...

    Congrats on there beautiful new car! Red sure is a strong color and I like how you have us quotes and talked about that color strength- I was just in Florida and grabbed a photo of a red car and while the color would not work for me (I am boring with gray- black – tan or white – but hey – it is what I like) and I can see how enjoyable it is to
    Enjoy a car you love in a color you like! And that is a sedan? Seems like sports car all this way….
    Hope it brings you all many years of enjoyment

  2. TanGental

    love the picture of you looking out of the passenger window with A out of the roof – talk about looking manic!! I’d not think this one is going to last!!

  3. New Journey

    OMG I love the new ride!! Screw Subaru’s, you got yourself a true vehicle. Nice job!! You look great in it and modeling by it. I love the color. Congrats. You deserve it! xx

  4. Rowena Post author

    Thanks so much, Kat. You probably don’t know that my husband has a Morris Minor as his Sunday drive. We all love Morrie but unfortunately he’s a manual and I can’t drive him. My husband also has an Austin Healey Sprite in the shed, but its probably only good for parts these days. I’m not sure.
    I feel so much better in my new car and its giving my well being a huge turbo charge. It’s fantastic. I am hoping this is an omen for the rest of the year. Geoff is off to pick up the X-trail today. New cars, new beginnings.
    xx Ro

  5. Rowena Post author

    Hey, Geoff, manic is when she does some of her acro moves out the roof, which I assure you is just a matter of time. She has a holiday acro workshop this afternoon.
    Yes, definitely a manic feel since the car arrived but it feels so good.
    This car is eing treated with kid gloves and not going near any nasty car parks!
    Best wishes,

  6. Rowena Post author

    Thanks very much, Monika. No dogs in this car…or eating…or trips to the beach. This is be a new experience for one of our cars.
    Best wishes,

  7. New Journey

    I love Morris Minors, It is one my bucket list of cars to own. We had an old MG convertible in California, lots of fun to drive, it was a manual too. We sold it before we moved, it was kinda like owning a horse, all we did was dump money into it. I love my Subabru, but we drive the Toyota mostly, better on gas. xx

  8. Rowena Post author

    Chika would look great in the back of an MG although she might jump out.
    I am concerned the Alfa could end up being a money pit AKA labour of love. We also have a couple of lasers, a small boat, and boats are known money pits as well.
    All up, looks like foot or pedal power could be my main form of transport to manage economy.

  9. New Journey

    I always wanted to do a horse and buggy. But to scared of the other drivers, in Pennsylvania where the Amish are the huge 18 wheelers fly by the little buggies. Sad for sure.

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