Archive for March, 2009

Mar 13

an ode to my baby car

This picture shows how I feel about my car being broken. It’s even raining in the picture, which is appropriate (you’ll see why). Yes, my car broke. It wasn’t really my fault either. I mean, it kind of was since I was driving, but I didn’t do anything mean to it. I just went to Divine Truth and parked and when I got out of the store, it wouldn’t start anymore. It wasn’t the first time this has happened, but it was the first time that waiting a little while didn’t help. I did try waiting a bit. I shopped more at Divine Truth for a while. Then I crossed the street and went to Walgreens. Then I crossed the street again and went to Big Lots. Then I was bored, and my car still wouldn’t start… So I called my mommy. She said she would rescue me. So I sat in my car and rolled down the windows and listened to Group One Crew and tried to look inconspicuous without falling asleep. Mom got there eventually but it took a long time so we thought maybe THEN it would start. But no. So I had to leave my baby car in the parking lot and go home without it.

Now, I must interrupt and tell you about my baby car. It’s older than me. It has a lot of rust, to the point where you can pull entire chunks of stuff off the back above the wheel wells. It has some quirks, like how the windows whine and moan and carry on when you roll them up and down, or like how the lights randomly get dimmer and brighter while driving. Also if you put it in park after running errands and leave it running, the engine revvs itself like 15 times (sometimes more) and you can watch the RPM guage go up and down and up and down and up and down… If you turn the wipers on, I swear it can tell whether it’s precipitating or not, because the wipers move faster when it’s raining. If you put the wipers on “high” when it’s raining, they look and sound like they are going to fly right off the car. Sometimes, when my car is having a bad day, it gets stuck in park and I have to use an extra key to put it in drive. This summer, I had to duct tape my muffler back on in a stranger’s driveway because it fell off while I was going somewhere. When I turn corners, the front wheels make this horrible ticking/clunking sound, but if I make a wider corner and use more gas it is quiet. And also, cold weather causes the key to stick in the ignition, so in the winter I have one car key in the ignition pretty much 24/7 and one set of keys to carry with me so I can get IN my car.

Now here’s the weird part – none of that was complaining. I just really KNOW my car. And I haven’t even been driving for more than like two years. Weird. As much as I appreciate the idea of a more reliable car, I might get depressed if I have to sell this ridiculous thing.

Anyway, with all of that fresh in your minds, consider how sad it was for me to leave my baby car in the parking lot all by itself. It got even worse when my dad and I went back to get it later and it wouldn’t start then either. I had to leave it there AGAIN, and that night it rained and poured and thundered and I felt sad about my car being all by itself far away from home. A day later, in the freezing cold, we went back AGAIN. This time we tried carburetor cleaner, engine starter fluid, the works (for future reference, neither Big Lots nor Walgreens sells carburetor fluid – go straight to Walmart). My poor baby car tried its best, but it just wouldn’t quite turn over… So we left it there again, this time with a note since we didn’t want it impounded: “I’m not abandoned, just broken. Someone will come back for me.” That time, between the freezing rain and the biting wind and the lonely parking lot, was nearly the breaking point for me. I almost cried. Seriously.

On Monday morning we had to have it towed home. My brother was thrilled to have a tow truck coming to our house. I was thrilled to see my car, although the towing guy didn’t park it straight. My parents weren’t thrilled about the cost of towing.

Today during a miraculous and extremely lucky moment, my dad somehow got it running. I drove it straight to the shop for fear that if we shut it off again, it would be toast. And now here I am, waiting for my baby car to be fixed and come back home again – hopefully SOON.

Is it so wrong to have a dirty old rusty car as my true love? Yeah, I didn’t think so either.

Alicia <3

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