Isn’t this exciting …. Boy, 4, bids on a $29,990 train

For a moment, Metlink, the public transport arm of Greater Wellington Regional Council, thought all its dreams had come   true when it received an opening  bid of $29,990 for an old train.

But  it turned out the Trade Me  bid was from an enthusiastic 4-year-old  whose mother was alarmed at  the prospect of owning a retired full-sized two-carriage unit.

“I’m really sorry,” an email to  Trade Me from smiley134 said. “My   4-year-old was playing and placed a  bid, I don’t actually want to buy  the  train, can my bid please be removed?”

Metlink customer services manager Zelda MacKenzie replied: “For  a  moment I thought I was falling in  love with you, smiley! But then you   blew it all.”

Trade Me allowed the bid for the  English Electric train to be  removed  yesterday after warning smiley134  to start looking for loose  change  down the back of the sofa.

MacKenzie said: “I find it fascinating, because when you bid on   something you have to click two or  three times to confirm. The child   has to be exceptionally bright if they  can read all that.”

Trade Me spokesman Paul Ford  said it was the seller’s prerogative to   remove the bid but “it is annoying  to have bids removed, and  particularly annoying for the seller”.

The train, which operated in the  Wellington area in the late 1940s,  was taken out of service this week  and put up for sale.

There have been no other bids  but there are nearly 150 comments,   ranging from genuine questions  about how to transport it, to quips   about trading it for a toy set.

“Is the Fat Controller included?  The train might need to be kept in  line,” said nzfatmatt.

The auction closes on Monday.

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