Like many of my colleagues I’ve been en route to the Geneva motor show today, but I didn’t expect my first car-related conversation to start quite as early as the self check-in desk of Heathrow Airport ’s Terminal Five.

I’m a big fan of those efficient self check-in machines that stand sentry-like in the terminal building. If you’re organised and have your passport and flight booking reference number to hand, you can check-in, negotiate security and be on your merry way to WH Smith to shelf-surf for car magazines within minutes.

However, a sub-clause in the law of sod obviously dictates that the bit of paper with your flight booking reference number written on it gets shuffled to the bottom of your holdall (even if you purposefully place it on the top before you leave your house).

This morning, as I fumbled in my bag for said bit of paper, a British Airways assistant offered his help with the check-in procedure. I warned him to expect a swarm of equally disorganised motoring journalists throughout the day, and told him about the Geneva motor show.

His eyes lit up. Turns out he is a dyed-in-the-wool Saab fan, is looking forward to seeing the Renault Captur from the show and is also an occasional letter writer to Autocar, all attributes that place him firmly in the ‘crazy about cars’ category.