MY CAR-OWNING career started so well. I was a baby broadcaster in Singapore and I had a Mini van. It was utterly brilliant. Very nippy, reliable, and above all spacious. It was like having a giant handbag; you could get everything in it.

A friend of mine who worked in the First National Bank of California proposed a car- swap. She was tall, blonde, leggy and had an equally glamorous car, an MGB roadster. The thought of swishing around Singapore and Malaysia in an open-top sports car I found very appealing. Unfortunately, it blighted my life.

Painted black, my moods after driving it were just as dark. The performance was truly dreadful. I expected an MGB to be really quick, and this was the wrong side of sluggish. People on pushbikes regularly overtook me on the inside. With the hood, it was almost impossible to see out safely. I sat very low and could barely see over the bonnet.

In fact, that hood was pretty pointless anyway, because it leaked. In monsoon weather it was next to useless, and so I found myself with either a wet bottom or a wet head and sometimes both. I couldn't wait to swap it back.

Now let's fast-forward 25 years. My sister was just about to have her first baby, but the last thing she did before giving birth was to buy a brand new MG. I realised that she hadn't actually thought it all through.

Babies, pushchairs, child- seats - and some space left over for the husband. Sure enough she hadn't, so I proposed a car-swap with my old blue BMW320i. She readily agreed. Obviously I hadn't learnt my lesson from a quarter of century before, because it turned out to be hell on wheels.

I remember finding myself all packed to go away for the weekend. Turkey casserole, pot plant, duvet, side of smoked salmon, me, boyfriend, handbag. There was just no room for anything at all. I couldn't complain about the car's performance this time, but I could have a jolly good moan about its practicality. I simply need a nice, comfortable and capacious mode of transport that suits my lifestyle.

When I finally got my old BMW back, I was absolutely ecstatic. MGs and me just don't get on, and I don't ever envisage getting involved in another sports-car swap.

Sarah Kennedy presents `Dawn Patrol', weekdays, 6 to 7.30am on Radio 2. She was speaking to James Ruppert