1972 - 1978:- VW Beetle no.1: painted it burnt orange with house paint. In Flinders Ranges driving along stoney dirt ditch in rugged road, severely sharp, pulled exhaust muffler away from connecting pipes. Decibel level 747 Jumbo. Cut open spent soft drink cans, rolled them making tubes and twist wired around them to fit like extension exhaust pipes. Decibel level half 747 Jumbo. Left FR followed barely drivable dirt track somewhere around Woomera area to avoid attention (big noise). Beetle had a stroke (no compression) and died. Two days later burnt Beetle (something to do) and prepared for being no more. Smoke inadvertently attracted homestead man from afar; rescued. VW Beetle no.2: had 1300cc engine. An inlet valve burnt out while approaching Onslow. Engine not happy. Found discarded red dirt encrusted 1200cc engine in ancient mechanic’s boneyard. Dropped engine using little hydraulic jack and Egyptian technology (doing impossible things with simple stuff and lateral thinking). Extracted inlet valve from it and put into no.2 Beetle. Got me to Darwin eventually that year and then died at traffic lights. VW Beetle no. 3: bought it off mechanic in Paraburdoo where I worked in the mine. Was a bit battered but had big bore kit bringing 1300cc to 1800cc. Big power! Driving along just outside Surfer’s Paradise, picked up female hitch-hiker to drop her off at SP. Striking up a conversation, she said, “VW huh, they’re supposed to be really reliable.” Bang! Motor suddenly blew up. Let her out, later abandoned vehicle and became a hitch-hiker. VW Beetle no.4: cannot remember engine size but body held together by paint and hope. Ambling along dirt road towards Elliston (SA) rear tyre was stabbed by a huge nail. Replaced the tyre with ancient scant pressured spare tyre which blew a short distance later. I continued driving and the tyre caught fire but I kept driving as Elliston was near and, I made it. Got out of Beetle, no people about (tiny town), then VW became engulfed and a few blokes appeared and offered me a beer. I said I did not drink, they then consoled me for that fact. VW Beetle no.5: Ah heaven! Freshly married and wife had 1972 Superbug 1600cc (heaven refers to wife, of course) but Bug had oil gushing from flywheel housing and ran a bit rough. Pulled engine and rebuilt it - alas, about three months later Bug met unavoidable collision and Beetle history ends here. And yet after five Beetles that have ‘passed’ I still love VWs (and my wife, of course).