Greetings from Hong Kong! I’m on my way back to Australia for a week or so. It’ll be great to be home again.
We had a cold snap in Trollhattan just before I left. I had to walk to the bus stop amongst falling snow a few days ago. Snow!! In May!!?? I guess we’re not in Kansas anymore….
Anyhow, given that I’m now slightly out of touch with what’s going on there in Trollywood (until I get home, at least), I thought I’d share a few stories I’ve heard over the last week or so. Being in Saab’s home town, you get to meet a few people who have been around the company for a long, long time. Even if they don’t work there, they still seem to be part of the Saab family simply because they’ve got so much shared history with the company and its people.
I’ve met a few people like that recently. One of them I’d like to meet again, with my camera, so that I can take a few photos and share his story properly.
Others have shared a few short stories, which I’d like to pass on here because they made me laugh, made me smile, just made me feel good.
The first one comes from taxi driver yesterday. He’s been doing the corporate run between Trollhattan and Landvetter airport for too many years to remember and he told me a bunch of stories yesterday. The one I’d like to share is more like a quote than a story.
We were talking about the recent troubles at Saab and he said
“I tend to see Saab the same as I see my grandson. He never knew that he couldn’t swim, so he just went in and started swimming. Saab are the same. They can’t imagine that they can’t survive, so they just do.”
The second is another short snippet about the Saab 99 and the effects it had on people back in its day. I was at dinner a few nights ago and talking with a guy who I’d guess would be in his early-mid 50s now. He was a youngster in the late 1960s when the Saab 99 was released and his father was choosing between that and something new that Volvo had released at the time.
He chose the Saab and ended up getting a new one most years from the early 1970s onwards.
Around 1972, the family had their new 99 and they went on a trip from Sweden down to Austria and Germany. When they pulled into a service area in Germany to fill up the car and stretch their legs, everyone – everyone – in the service area came over to look at the Saab. They were particularly curious about one item. Everyone wanted to see…….
……..those fantastic new headlamp washers and wipers in action!
The car was a hit everywhere they went and I guess it cemented the Saab-buying habit in the family. A few years later, they bought a 99EMS and my friend had just got his driver’s licence. Naturally, he tried to borrow his father’s car whenever he could.
“It became very easy to offer the girls a lift in that car and have them accept……”
Saab – inspiring people and easing them into relationships since 1947………