My Happy Place

People go to great lengths to find a place that makes them happy. It could be a quiet spot away from everyone else or it maybe in the thick of things in Vegas; it may even be grabbing a glass of fine wine or a cup of earl gray while having a moment of internal solitude. The thing is, we all need a place to call our own, a place to take stock and recharge – I have recently found mine.
Ferrari’s new 488GTB may not be an obvious choice for most people and up until last month I probably wouldn’t have considered it either but bear with me for a while. I was handed the keys to this all powerful machine and told I could take her away for a spell (40 hours, 23 minutes and 12 seconds to be exact). Having the responsibility of care taking such an awe-inspiring car both in terms of the financial investment needed and knowing the amount of speed this car possesses is not for everyone – and something that the beads of sweat on my forehead and my heart palpitations would attest but once away from the showroom on a beautifully sunny afternoon and with the Manettino in sport you quickly become at ease.

Below 3500 rpm the 488 is quiet (relatively) and very simple to drive. The luxurious leather seats are comfortable and supportive, the steering is precise but predictable and the handling in (almost sedate). And then there’s the view. Though the windscreen you get to see the dominant haunches of the front wings, it gives you a perfect perspective of where you are in the world at that precise moment in time. Through the side mirrors you see the cars artistic (and somewhat dramatic) side air scoops. And through the rear view mirror you get to see the cars statement of a V8 powerhouse. So from the driver’s seat literally every angle offers million dollar views – it’s a peaceful place to be and a place of ultimate accomplishment and like lingering kiss; the deep leather scent stays on your clothes long after you leave the car.

The 488 comes equipped with a JBL stereo and I’m sure it’s fine but the symphony you really want to hear is when you push down on the accelerator. The revs jump up over 3,500 and she bursts into audible heaven. It’s a sound that reverberates through the car and goes deep down to your soul – your mind goes blank and nothing else matters – particularly as your body will by then; be moving from 0-100 in a mere 3 seconds. The twin turbo’s near your ears sounds like a riding crop cutting through the air, the dominance is surreal and yet intoxicating. Believe me; the longer you spend behind the wheel of this car, the more your lust for it grows. You begin to contemplate doing unimaginable things to keep it… Ahem, I digress.

In those short hours, I took her from the city to the beach, from the straight roads of the freeway to the winding turns of the countryside but you know what? When I pulled up onto my driveway at home, switched her off and simply listened to the engine tick as she cooled down, I must say that it was one of the most tranquil and peaceful places I have ever been fortunate to be.

So if you happen to be passing the Continental Car’s Ferrari showroom and see a guy sitting quietly in the driver’s seat of a 488, please leave him alone – It’s just me in my new happy place.

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