Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Requiem for a Blue Car

Good news: my cell phone is working.

Bad news: my car isn't.

Yes, after almost exactly 12 years of ownership (I got the Blue Beast right before my 20th birthday), my poor, beat-up, run-down automobile has finally reached the point where fixing what ails it ain't worth the cost. Kind of wish it had reached that point before I spent money on an oil change and tune-up instead of after, but such is life; while doing work on it, the mechanics discovered that the timing was about to go out, and warned me that the engine might not have long to live. My parents offered to help me out paying for repairs if necessary. Then my day yesterday went something like this:

  • Car won't start
  • Dad calls and offers to take money they offered for repairs and apply to down payment on new(ish) car
  • Dad goes car shopping in Miamuh for me
  • Dad finds car he highly recommends I purchase (2006 Kia Optima)
  • Plan is made: I'll ride back to Miamuh with folks after their visit and get car then
  • Plan is changed: Folks will pay for me to fly up on Friday, take care of car on Monday.
  • Plan is changed again to flying up Thursday night when I remind them that Monday is Memorial Day
  • Plan is changed yet again when I discover the huge price difference between morning and night flights; Thursday morning it is

Now, those who know me well know that I am not a spontaneous person; I hate making on-the-spot decisions of any sort, and something as major as new car purchase just ramps the usual stress up several degrees. Throw in on top of this the fact that I'm sleep-deprived; already stretched thin financially; dealing with some other, non-bloggable and highly stress-inducing issues; and still nursing a sore tailbone which does not relish the thought of the 5 1/2 hour drive back to Denton, new car or not, and you have a very frazzled Cap'n Neurotic on your hands.

Plus, with everything that's been going on recently, I'd really been looking forward to a nice, long, relaxing weekend where I could just sit around, not worry about anything, and enjoy time with my friends and family. While I'll still get to see the family, and might be able to squeeze in a quick visit with a high school friend or two, the promise of a totally relaxing time got thrown out the window the instant dealing with airports and hours of driving got thrown into the mix.

Don't get me wrong; I am incredibly thankful for all that my parents are doing for me here, and I realize just how blessed I am to have family and friends who are willing and able to help out in a time of need. Things are just moving more quickly than my neurotic mind likes, and I'm having trouble shifting mental gears to accommodate everything. I'm just going to have to focus on the positives (having a car with working AC, working cruise control, CD player, etc.) instead of the negatives (disruption of plans, budgeting for car payments).

The next step, of course, is figuring out what the heck I'm going to do with the dead car in our driveway . . .


magnificent malingerer said...

For our last dead car, we called Pull A Part. They came and towed the beast away and gave us money for the parts. It wasn't much, of course, but it beat a kick in the head. All in all, a painless experience and all it took was a phone call. Oh, you do have to sign over the title so they can junk it. Just a suggestion from one who has had many vehicles bite the big one over the years.