Crabby Old Lady has been on such a binge of complaints lately (or, as Claude at Blogging in Paris puts it, "in grumbleland") that to write this story, I had to pry her fingers from the computer keyboard one-by-one.
Certainly I’ve mentioned in the past that I dislike automobiles. It’s like having a perpetual infant - they always want something: gasoline, oil, window washer juice, tires, tags, inspections, insurance renewals and then there are the mysterious noises they develop that may or may not be calamitous. It is my contention that after a century of development, cars should run like refrigerators - plug them in and they go for 20 years.
Another mystery is people’s love affair with their cars and their favor of one brand or model over others. All I care about is getting from point A to point B with a minimum of fuss. Not having owned one since 1969, the only cars I can identify at a glance are those with a unique body style - the VW bug, which is one of the most elegant redesigns in automotive history, and more recently, the retro-styled Chrysler PT Cruiser. Each in its own way is an esthetic beauty.
But in general, I have no interest in cars. When I’m asked at rental agencies what kind I want, I tell them “red” so I have a slight chance of finding it in a parking lot.
With all that in mind, it is with reluctance that I have been making moves toward the purchase of an automobile, a necessity to get around my new hometown of Portland, Maine and its vicinity.
I enlisted the help of a friend in Pennsylvania, Neil Thompson, who knows everything - inside and out - about cars. He has been diligently following local advertisements for me and as of today, I am the new owner of a 2004 PT Cruiser Sportwagon at a price considerably below the going rate for that year and model. It has 25,000 miles on it, checks out clean with Carfax and is still under factory warranty. Plus, it is red so I won’t lose track of it at the supermarket.
This isn’t the actual car, just an example I found on the web, but isn’t she beautiful?
The oddest thing has happened to me now that she’s mine - I’m in love. I think this gray-haired old lady will make a remarkable impression tooling around in such a fine-looking vehicle. Equally remarkable is that I suddenly care about that. Where did this pride of ownership (false or not) come from after a lifetime of disinterest? I’m even feeling less annoyed with the required upkeep.