Chances are you don't believe this story. It is about 'feeling' and 'understanding', but also about a particularly long-term possession. To start with the feeling, Durk liked to talk about things he loved, and that was the Citroën Traction Avant.
By: Dirk de Jong
We write 1977: Durk attended a classic car event together with his brother Jan and saw this last brainchild of André Citroën that was shining. That proliferated in him the desire to own one Citroën Traction Avant. Visits to classic car events became orientation trips, in which Durk eventually managed to find a copy that deserved a second life. A Citroën Traction Avant 11 B from 1953.
After the purchase, an extensive two-year restoration followed. That is not just anything, every restorer knows that. A considerable amount of knowledge of the technology is required. And not only that, because time, energy, guilders (then!) And skill must all be sufficiently available. Fortunately, Riekje, Durk's wife, was ready with help and understanding. The help consisted of upholstering, her skills made the Frenchman's interior look like new again. The paintwork was outsourced, which later revealed that there were small blisters in the paint. But what's really incredible and unique is that the Citroën After restoration, Traction Avant only saw the sunlight five times over a period of 44 years.
Durk: “It is understandable that I received a lot of criticism about this in my environment. For me it was more about owning the black beauty. I cherish the time when this Traction - in my youth - also determined the street scene. I have a good sense of technique, but I am not a cleaner. And, it turns out, no rider either. But he is a happy owner of a car that became famous for its excellent performance. And as a result, the favorite vehicle was from ministers and police to gangsters. As long as you worry about what others think of you, then you own them. Life has taught me that. "
Feeling and understanding
Inevitably, sooner or later most of us have to get rid of things. The advanced age and the feeling that someone else could still enjoy the Traction was decisive for the sale. Durk's brother Jan was someone who wanted to give priority to reason and he helped him Citroën to let go emotionally. When the car was offered there was immediate interest from Slovenia (Country in the Balkans) and the car has now left the Netherlands. But honestly: Still melancholy as the Citroën Traction Avant 11 B rolls out of the garage, wiping away a tear after 44 years of ownership is still justified?
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