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On my way to lunch today, I saw a pretty cool car. It was Bumblebee-esque (insert Transformers reference here) except it was lime green instead of yellow. I hadn’t seen that color before and it definitely stood out among the normal colors.

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Today was the craziest day. It was 80+ degrees outside so I drove to work with my window down. As I’m driving down the road I hear that unmistakable clunk followed by a buzz that tells you a bee just got sucked in the window. I pulled over at a church and jumped out checking the car. I couldn’t fins anything so I got back in and continued on to work. At one point I looked down and there was a bee on my leg. I panicked and I’m not usually a panicker. I have doors that automatically lock when the car is in drive so you have to pull on them several times before they’ll unlock and open. I slammed on the brakes (good thing I take backroads) and pulled on the door until it opened. I was able to get the bee off of me before it stung me, but then I noticed in my mild hysteria I forgot to put the car in park! My car starts driving itself down the road. I had to chase it down Indiana Jones style, jump in and stop the car. It was ridiculous. Luckily I stopped it and because I take backroads there was no one to watch my performance. But the fun didn’t stop there. Once I got to work, I’m about halfway through my day when I realize my keys are missing. Sure enough, I go out to my car and there’s my keys, sitting on the driver seat in the locked car. Thank goodness for OnStar.

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My Equinox cares about me. And, today it was right. It’s snowing and icing like crazy outside. It’s supposed to switch to rain though so it shouldn’t cause too much trouble, hopefully. Hope everyone stays safe.

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I don’t know if it was today’s constant colossal downpour or what, but Equi decided to pretend like it was brand new again. Even though Santa Fe washes my car often, including windows, today an imprint of the window sticker began to show up on the window. It makes you wonder how well they really wash it.

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Okay, so the new car has XM radio in it. Not something I had to have or really even wanted, the car just came with it. But now, I’m kinda hooked. I’ve been jamming to Z100 and I like it, but then I found Elvis Radio and now I kind of love it. What can I say, I guess I’m my father’s child. It’s all Elvis all the time. While I realize Elvis has a healthy amount of songs to choose from, I was curious as to how he could fill a whole channel. It turns out the station is run out of Graceland by these two old men who spend a lot of time b.s.ing about nothing. They answer Elvis style emails, offer Elvis trivia, talk about Elvis festivals and discuss the looks of the visitors at Graceland. “Everywhere I look today there’s a pretty girl,” and the workings of Skype were two of the topics discussed during the 15 or so minutes I tuned in. That’s some great radio right there. And I found the Soul channel. I think tomorrow I’ll try something from the Canadian list.

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I bought a new car today! Ron and I spent a lot of time over the last two weekends looking at various cars on many different lots. We were very interested in the Chevrolet Equinox, but thought we couldn’t get it in our price range. They were ordering some new ones in, and one would be the lower model version, so we decided to check it out when it came in. Then, it didn’t come in when we thought it would so yesterday we found a really nice Jeep that we liked. However, I couldn’t get the Equinox off my mind and the seller, Julius, was so nice right from the beginning. When I woke up this morning and told Ron I wasn’t sold on the Jeep, he was less than happy, mostly because of my inability to make a decision. We called the dealership and left a message letting the seller know we might want to look at something else. Fast forward an hour or two. We are leaving breakfast, headed to get gas, and there goes the truck with the Equinox on it heading for the dealership. We headed there as well, after enough time to not look totally sketch like we were stalking the truck, and after five hours of work, we were able to get the Equinox in our price range and bought it. So exciting. I’m glad I won’t have to worry about breaking down anymore. And I really appreciate all the help we received from Julius, especially when so many other sellers were not nice. It’s so wonderful to be able to go on the lot and be treated well–not like we’re too young, or stupid, or unworthy of owning anything nice. We work really hard so its nice to have something to show for it. Now all of that said, I was really sad to see my Saturn go. I will absolutely miss it, enough with all the trouble it has had lately. I feel bad, like maybe its at the dealership cold, lonely and scared. I know that’s weird, but I absolutely get attached to inanimate objects. I always feel like they have feelings too. When I was younger, I would make sure my stuffed animals were all tucked under the covers so they would stay warm. I can’t help it, I feel bad about trading the Saturn. It’s been a great car and I have had it for so long. I’ll really miss it. I hope it ends up at a good home with a good family who will appreciate it as much as I have.

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This weekend, I’ve been perusing the car lots. I’ve hit the local Ford, Chevrolet and Jeep dealerships. No, I am not looking to purchase a Viper, I just found it entertaining that the Dodge/Jeep dealership actually had one and it was owned by someone there. Anyway, since I’ve been looking at cars, I’ve realized that car shopping is not as fun as I thought it would be. It really boils down to one issue and that’s ageism. I’m someone who looks much younger than I actually am. At work, when I have to cover something at one of the schools, I’m often mistaken for a student, both middle and high school. Some people would say that’s a good thing and not really a problem at all, but it actually is. I first really ran into it when I purchased my wedding dress. The manager of the store was incredibly rude to me and treated me as if I was a child bride. How awful. I’m in your store, willing to spend hard-earned money on your product and you can’t treat me with any type of respect because you’re judging me based on my appearance. I can’t control how young I look and it’s not fair that I should be punished for that. One should never judge a book by its cover. At the Ford dealership, I ran into ageism again along with sexism. The man treated me as if I was stupid and didn’t know anything. He called me “sweetie” and “dear” and wouldn’t talk to me, but rather to Ron. I’m the one who is going to be driving this. It’s going to be primarily my car. Talk to me.  He told me basically I couldn’t afford anything over $15,000, which is both incredibly stupid and wrong, and I was mistaken in my research (no he didn’t say it that nice) and the competition car had a starting price of $30,000. Funny how I went right next door to Chevrolet, found an amazing, helpful, incredible salesman who not only showed me the Equinox, but also explained everything about it and gave me a price of $25,000 which he said they would definitely be willing to work on. He also looked to see what would be arriving in the future and found me one at $24,000, which again could be worked with. Now, I’m much more likely to purchase the Chevrolet from this salesman than the Ford from the other salesman, or really any salesman at all. I guess he didn’t realize that not only is he representing a dealership, but he is also representing the brand as a whole. That’s a shame, especially in this economy when American cars are struggling. I want to support my country’s economy and my local economy, but that doesn’t mean I won’t go elsewhere if I’m not treated well. Then today, I went to check out the Jeep Compass. Nice car, but the salesman once again wasn’t very nice. I think that’s just his personality, but still. I’m here, trying to spend my hard-earned money and I would like to be treated with a little respect. Please don’t look at me and think I’m young and naive. I’ve done my homework. I’ve looked up fair market value, annual gas costs, depreciation, reviews and more. I know what I want and I know what I don’t want. I also know what I’m willing to pay and what I’m not. I won’t be suckered by fabrications or extras like bluetooth. If you want me to spend money in your dealership, which I’m fairly sure also ensures money in your pocket through commission, act like it. Be nice, be courteous and be respectful. You aren’t just representing yourself or your dealership, but also the brand as a whole. As the result of my experience, I’m completely over the Ford Escape. It’s nothing special inside and I don’t support ageists.

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Alright, I’m way over denial with my car and bargaining. Now I’m just pissed. And frustrated. And irritated. As I mentioned yesterday, I had to have my car towed to my mechanic. It was missing like crazy and the check engine light was blinking. Now, unfortunately, the mechanic couldn’t deal with it and I sent it elsewhere. So I did that today and $400 later, I have it back, but I still can’t tell if it’s fixed. Plus, this mechanic also mentioned the axle issue which is really starting to freak me out. I don’t want to be driving down the road and have my axle break. I’ve googled it, and while it says my car will basically just stop moving, I’m not so sure. Plus, that’s only if I’m traveling in a straight line or if it’s a certain type of car. If I happen to be turning or if I’m really stupid and have the wrong car type, I could go flying off into the unknown somewhere. And, let’s not forget the underlying transmission issue. I like my car and I’ve had it a long time. We’ve been through college together and my first real job, among other things, but I think it may be time to let it go. I have no idea where to let it go to, but the idea of being able to fill up a windshield washer fluid reservoir, driving for 3,000 miles without having to carry quarts of oil in my trunk as back-up, moving smoothly down the road, not seeing a check engine light glowing and not having to google things like “what happens when an axle breaks” is beginning to sound really good. Car payment and all.

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I’ve known it was coming for a while, but I didn’t think it would happen today. My car might have officially died this morning. I told Ron as soon as we paid for our cruise something was going to break. I made the final payment Friday morning and here it is Tuesday and the car died. Well, my toothbrush broke along with the light over the stove, but the car is the major one. I guess 153,000 miles was just too much. As previously stated, I have a strong attachment to my car so it doesn’t feel good that it may be done. I feel like my car has a terminal illness and needs tons of organs, but either the insurance is refusing to pay or it’s at the bottom of the donor recipient list. I had it towed to a shop this morning, but (and this is a really bad sign) the problem is too intense for them to even fully diagnose, so I have to send it somewhere else tomorrow. That’s a pretty big bummer, especially considering I just put two new tires on it (ie. the Wal-Mart fiasco), updated the tags and had it inspected. I’ve been trying to keep it alive longer and I really thought it would make it at least until this winter, but I guess not. Hopefully I’ll find out for sure tomorrow. If it’s too much, I’ll have to go car shopping and that’s a whole different issue. I’ve never bought a car and I don’t think I can coupon my way out of this one. Plus, I have no idea what to do with my Saturn. I really don’t want to junk it, but because it’s salvage and has “health” issues, I don’t think I can sell it or trade it. I had considered donating it to charity, but I doubt any charity would want to put the work into it. Maybe I should consider pick-a-part. Then, instead of being an organ recipient, it can be an organ donor and live on in other cars. That’s kind of weird, huh?