Sunday – Bride Or Prejudice

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There are still a surprising number of  people who don’t know how to get in the back of a Giulietta. Sometimes you can see it coming… These are the people who opt to sit in the back, then open the front door and get cross because the driver’s seat doesn’t  roll forward enough!

There was a wedding at the White Lion in Aldeburgh last night and this morning, one of the guests tracked me down. Not because I had flirted with the bride but because he was on the verge of buying a VW Golf GTI and wanted to check out the competition. Naturally, I obliged.

While I complimented him on his choice of car, I was also keen to see what he thought of the Alfa, in a non prejudicial way. I think it was fair to say he was blown away. Once he had checked out the back seats, I took him for a drive for a few miles up the Suffolk coastline.

He played with all the buttons, loved the optional Bose sound system, cooed at the outrageously alternative dash and then gave me his verdict.

Class-leading hatchback with rock solid residuals (Golf) versus cool-looking Italian rock star car (Giulietta)? Naturally, he’s off to his Alfa dealer tomorrow…

Saturday – White Riot

cropped-alfa1.jpgThe White Lion at Aldeburgh is right on the beach. It’s painted white, the same as our Giulietta and, just like the Alfa, is rather well equipped inside.

I spent breakfast this morning staring out of the dining room window at the sea. Or to be honest, rather longingly at the Giulietta which had just whisked me here from the West Country.

The 150-mile journey is one of my least favourite – tortuous might be a better description. What the Alfa did last night more than any other car was take me back to my teenage years, when my 1971 Alfa GT Junior was the vehicle parked outside the family home.

The Giulietta is a throughly modern Alfa Romeo but there’s still more than a trace of ‘old school’ Alfa DNA about it. The ribbed leather seats, the speedometer dials labelled in Italian and the timeless Alfa grille, to name but a few.

The 1.4-litre TB engine is a revelation too – how did they squeeze so much performance out of such a modest unit? No wonder it was New Engine of the Year in 2012.

I’ve never liked white cars but like the drive to the White Lion last night, because of the Giulietta, I’m warming to them all the time.