I decided not to go to away to the conference this week after all.¹
A sweet bonus of not being away this weekend is that I’ll get to go to something fun that I would have otherwise been sad to miss: Micro Mini Car Day at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum. Car shows are not generally my thing, or at least not what I would think of as being historically my thing, and I don’t necessarily consider myself a car buff.
There are, however, a couple of noteworthy exceptions: British cars, and really small cars.² Last year, we went to and enjoyed British Car Day³, a lawn event at the same museum, and when we saw the upcoming listing for Micro Mini Car Day, I was well and truly intrigued.
I have to say the event was even cooler than I’d anticipated. In addition to the Minis and MGs and Smarts and such that I’d anticipated, I got to see all kinds of little cars that I’d never even known existed. I’ve been meaning to share some of the photos from the even for ages, and here I am finally getting around to it. Buckle up!⁴
The Isetta was also known, not too shockingly, as the “bubble car.” Fond as I am of the Austin Mini, I may want to pinch the cheeks of the Isetta even more. I mean, just look at it!
One of the most striking quirks about the Isetta is that the driver enters through a single front door. (Observe that the little 2-seater above has no side door.) The front door opens sideways on hinges, much like a refrigerator door. By the way, the car was originally made by a company that also made refrigerators. Coincidence?
An especially cool feature of this event is that many of the car owners offer rides to attendees. (You can see people and cars lined up in the background in the photo, below.) I got to go for a ride in this Austin Mini, which was my first time actually inside a classic Mini.
I also went back in line a second time, and scored a ride in this cherry Nash Metropolitain, whose enthusiastic owner was dressed in colors to match her paint.
This year, I’m hoping to have a chance to go for a ride or 2 again–maybe even in an Isetta!
Even if I don’t manage to catch any rides, I’m looking forward to a fun day outside in a beautiful park. There is lots of room to run around, and Phoebe happily did so. (Theo, on the other hand, could barely yet stand.)⁵
And in case you want to see more photos of tiny cars, I’ve put a bunch more in the slideshow below. (If you want to slow down or stop the slideshow, put your cursor over the slideshow to have the controls appear.)
¹ Much as I wanted to attend the conference itself, I couldn’t bring myself to commit to the travel involved. I’m still recovering from two biggish trips in the last couple of months, and it seemed unusually hard on John and the kiddos to abandon them so soon after my return. What finally helped me stop the waffling, or to tip the waffle into the “stay home” side of things, was taking into account both the expense and the fossil fuel gluttony of such a trip. (After all, I am trying to cut down.)
² You might remember the photos I posted from last year’s British Car Day.
³ And yes, I really love the really small British cars. Really.
⁴ Or otherwise brace yourselves, as many of the vintage cars probably didn’t have seatbelts.
⁵ You may recognize the setting as the same as in my photo I called Theo’s World. That’s because I took that one the same day.