A PAKISTANI father of three has described the joy that his collection of 5,000 model cars brings him.
Aamir Ashfaq, 49, from Lahore, got his first toy car aged eight. Today his hobby is housed in his study, and it includes model cars, from Bugatti to Suzuki.
“When I hold a car in the palm of my hand, I remember things I had forgotten about, and this gives me immense joy. I can’t explain it in words,” he told Pakistan Weekly.
“Memories may fade with time, but these cars take me back to moments in the past.”
The father of three said his love for the toy cars has not diminished with age. He does not feel odd indulging this pastime, although he admitted it looked “childish”.
His prized collection in his 12×14 square foot room includes scaled models of most of the beautiful “rolling masterpieces” on the planet.
Among his toy cars are those of Mercedes Benz, BMW, Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Bugatti, Bentley and Rolls Royce.
American vehicles have a special appeal for him and models of Chevrolet, Buick, Oldsmobile, Cadillac, Pontiac, Chrysler, Plymouth, Dodge, Jeep are prominently displayed in the room.
“My pursuit may not have gone far enough to earn a world record, but such a collection is still unique in Pakistan”, he said.
Ashfaq is grateful to his parents for indulging him when he asked for a toy car as a young boy.
“I remembered my childhood days. Whenever I went to a mart, first I would pick up a toy car and look towards my parents who never disappointed me”.
Most of the toys, which he described as a “treasure”, are gifted to him. His aunts and cousins settled in England, Canada and the US also presented him with some of the premium scaled models which are not available in Pakistan.
“This kind of treasure takes decades to build, hours and hours of care, but if you have the passion then all that hard work brings pleasure and always keeps a smile of satisfaction on your face” Ashfaq said.
His three daughters also share his love of toy cars. They preferred toy cars to dolls and kitchen sets while they were growing up, he said.