Tuesday, February 23, 2010

End of an Era

I'm not sure what the era would be called:

"Our Cooler Days" (notice I didn't say "Cool" days...I've never hit that era in my life.)

"Sportier Days"

"Easy-to-get-a-speeding-ticket-but-luckily-never-did Days"

Yesterday we said good-bye to an old friend.

It's been four years since we drove this baby home.  At the time we had been looking for a car because we were tired of paying so much for gas.  However, we weren't sure a car was exactly what we wanted for a long-term vehicle.  So, we leased it. 

And we were right.  A car just isn't our first choice right now.  We can easily take our children places, but they can never be neighborly and invite someone along unless we stuff that someone in the trunk.  And that's just not being neighborly.  So, we are currently on the lookout for a 7-passenger vehicle of some kind.  One of my large preferences is All-Wheel-Drive.  After driving Mike's truck a lot the last two winters, I just feel better with that option.

But I loved this car. 
I loved the color.
I loved the buttons/dashboard.
I loved the heated seats.
I loved that the doors automatically unlocked when I turned off the car.
I loved that I could lock the doors when I exited but it would delay locking for 60 seconds; I didn't have to wait to lock anything while the kids were poky getting out.
Did I mention I loved the heated seats.  Loved.  Capital "L".

But here's what I'll miss most about this car:


A manual transmission.  This was a requirement when we shopped for this vehicle.  I love to drive stick-shift cars.  And this one was extra fun because it was a 6-speed, which I'd never driven.  I may have extended my test-drive on the night we were comparing two cars by "accidentally" missing the exit ramp to get back to the dealership.  I was having too much fun in this car and was afraid Mike was going to tell me we couldn't get it.

But he was sold on it too.  He was sold on the sun-roof.  It was a panoramic opening roof which meant that basically it opened all the way back.  Actually, I would be lying if I didn't say I absolutely LOVED that in the spring, summer and fall months.  I would also be lying if I didn't say that on the first few 40 degree days of spring I would drive around with the top opened up after being cooped up all winter. 


Now it's gone.  I took it for one last drive back yesterday.  When we got to the dealership Mike said, "I'm surprised that you didn't have the top opened up."  I told him I honestly almost did, except I'm just getting to the point of being able to lay down and sleep at night after having this awful stuffed head, so I didn't want to risk it.

We aren't really in any rush to get a second car.  We both work from home and for the most part can adapt our schedules to make one car work.  Mike doesn't think we can make it with one car as long as I think we can.  He's already researching all our options and we've already test-driven a couple cars.  Nothing that really made either of us too excited.  I didn't like how they handled and he didn't like what they cost. 

But I'll end on a happy note.  I still have this:

This is the first keychain I was given when I turned 16; I'm 36.  I hope to have this when I'm 80.  Actually I hope to still be driving when I'm 80.

Anyway, this movie had just come out and each of my friends bought me a little something having to do with "The Little Mermaid" because I loved it so much (still do!).  This keychain has been my companion through all five cars I've owned. 

Mike hates this keychain.  Actually he hates when he's forced to use the keys attached to it because we can't find the other set.  You can imagine his sheer delight when he asked me what I was going to do with it and I told him it was going on a set of keys for his truck.

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