Last Saturday was kind of a big day for us.
We were driving on Amherst Rd on our way to meet the Cruzes and head to Dillsboro. I'm glad the whole family was in the car for this momentous event.
We've only had our van for the past 3 1/2 years, but we've tried hard to add our fair share of the miles.
This old van has problems. Plenty. For posterity, here are a few:
-rear left window doesn't open
-left automatic sliding door will shut about 90% of the way before inexplicably sliding back open about half the time, you have to give it a little shove for the last bit
-that awful buzz noise that sounds when you put the car into gear while the sliding doors are still open will randomly begin while we're driving for no apparent reason
-the heat/ac will only blow on low or high...nothing in the medium range
-engine has been making a nice whine noise for awhile
-the oil leaks
-and we just ignore the perpetually aglow check engine and maintenance required lights
-sometimes when you start and stop a lot (like running a bunch of quick errands) you really have to baby the engine to keep it from stalling right when you start it: rev it up to three, hold it there for a few seconds, put it into reverse quickly, it'll be fine.
But. I love it, and I'm not being sarcastic. I don't list the ailments to complain, they are each like an old friend. I feel a deep gratitude to the vehicle that took us on the best family vacation ever. Also, it's a great source of family bonding to joke about our clunker. (The random buzzing, Lydia has decided, is due to a ghost named Honky that lives in the trunk.) We can't seem to stop laughing when something new goes wrong. There's something wonderfully freeing about having a car that allows us not to stress about messes, car door dings, etc.
The plan is to replace it come summertime (or whenever it becomes undrivable, whichever comes first). I have to admit though, if it's still with us by then I'll be tempted to keep driving. Remember that episode of Seinfeld where Kramer's test driving a car and they drive till they run out of gas? I kind of want to keep driving till it won't drive anymore. I imagine going along and suddenly it shudders to a halt, and vomits the engine out of the hood and onto the ground. That's the way to go. I'll keep you posted.