Sushma Reddy for the road
Sushma Reddy is one woman who's as crazy about cars as men. And she believes that she's had a relationship with all the five cars that she's owned in her lifetime. So whenever it's time to sell off her hotwheel, she makes it a point to not be around, because she can't 'deal with' the loss. The actor/model, who's just bought herself a mid-range luxury car, talks to CS about her love for cars and driving:
Who: Sushma Reddy
What: Talking about her love for cars and driving
Where: At her Bandra residence
An automatic relationship
I think the automobile market in India is very limited. I would have loved to import my car if I didn't have to pay duty on it. These days, the mid-range and budget cars look like cousins with snub noses. So for me, the look of a car isn't a criterion for buying anymore, I just go for the features and the price. And I like to do my research before investing in a car, because it's something that I'm going to spend a lot of time with. In fact, I spend more time with my car than I would with people, so it is only natural that I develop a special bond with it. I think, cars are temperamental -- they have their good and bad days. So I make it a point to treat my car well.
When I got the keys of my new car, I decided to take my dad for a drive. Now, he's a fantastic driver, just like Sameera (Reddy), while I'm quite the reckless sort. But this drive was a nightmare because he kept giving me instructions (sighs). I think my dad has a natural instinct for a vehicle, he's just great. My mom on the other hand is quite a rash driver. She's driven all her life and is best friends with every 'pandu' in the city. I can tell you many funny stories about her driving. About 15 years ago, she banged her car into my dad's, and he was so livid that he just stared at her and then drove off. A cab driver who saw her following him said, 'Madam aap kitni besharam ho. Pehle gadi thokti ho, phir unpe line lagati ho. (You are so shameless, first you bang into his car and then you hit on him." The cabbie refused to believe that my mom was just trying to make up with her husband (laughs).
Taking the wheel
So I guess, as a family, we all love driving. I've done many crazy things with my cars. But overtime, I've matured as a driver, I'm not as reckless as I used to be. Earlier, my parents would be so paranoid that they would call up Sameera to find out what I was up to and she would tell them that I covered Bandra to town in seven minutes. I would also pick these random races with absolute donkeys on the road. Now, I've become very chilled out though. When a driver is trying to race me, I just let him go. I'd call myself a safe driver now.