Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Car talk

For a little old lady, I have had a lot of cars in the past 10 years. I can count 7 that I've purchased in the last decade. That's a lot of cars. There's a story that goes with each one of them.

Like the trip I took to Yellowstone in 2003, and came home with the ultimate souviner, a brand new Ford Expedition. This was a purchase that was made necessary because we were stuck in Jackson Hole with a vehicle that needed a new transmission, which would have taken 3 weeks to send away, repair and replace. That would have been an expensive hotel bill for 3 weeks in Jackson Hole! Or we could have flown out for $3600. I figured that I'd rather spend my money on something besides hotels or airplane tickets, so I bought a car! What a memory!

Then there was the hybrid Prius that I bought by fax. Saw it in St. Louis, drove it and couldn't get a salesperson at that dealership to even try to sell it to me. So I found another dealership in another city who was all too willing to deal, I told him where to find the car I wanted and we closed the deal by fax machine. Never left my house to purchase it! So simple!

There were a bunch more Toyotas in my future. Lured by the wonderful gas mileage of the Prius, the spousal unit wanted something economical to drive instead of his monster truck. So we got another Toyota--by this time the hybrids were getting hard to get, so we bought a little cheap Corolla. Later that year, another family member was in need of transportation, so we bought another cheap Corolla. We were now a 5 car family. The insurance company loved us.

Tragedy befell the family in the summer of '04 when the hubs was diagnosed with brain cancer, thus ending his driving days. So the excess inventory of the driveway was ferried up to the Toyota dealer, who took three of them off our hands, and gave us one nice Highlander in return. We even got money back on that deal! The Highlander was comfortable and roomy, and in 6 months I put 20000 miles on it driving the Mr. to doctors for his treatments. I made a deal with the family member driving the one cheap Corolla, trade with me, you drive the Highlander 3 miles a day to work, I'll drive the Corolla (gas mileage over 36 MPG)200 miles per week to the doctors. It became the ambulance that took hubs to many a doctor and hospital visit.

When I lost my sweetie (4 years ago on June 2), I needed a change. Daughter #2 and I had long admired Solaras, and I envisioned myself in a beautiful red convertible, so I bought my beautiful red Solara convertible that summer. Fun car, and quite a head turner--that is until people see the old lady driving it! Still looks good today, and it is a great little car.

The year I got my Medicare card, the old monster truck ('97 Dodge Ram) of the hubs was still hogging up way too much space in the garage, and had cost me a pretty penny over the past year to fix little things. So, I figured it was time to say good bye to it. But I liked the fact that it hauled a lot of stuff, so I started to look for an updated vehicle to haul things. I had bought a bike that year for my 65th birthday, the vehicle needed to be able to haul that for sure. Again, made a trip to the Toyota dealer, they found me a cute little RAV4 to trade. I still remember the used car appraiser, looking over the truck, saying, "A little touch up paint, it'll look good as new!" They gave me a pittance on a trade, but I didn't care, they took it off my hands, and I was glad.

So that is the story of all 7 of the cars I've bought in the past decade.

One more car story. You know when you trade in vehicles, especially very old ones, they are usually carted off to some junkyard somewhere, never to be seen again. Well, several months after I traded the monster truck, I was driving down "used car row" near my house, and I saw a very familiar outline of a monster truck on the lot of a used car dealer. The hubs truck was unique because it had pin striping on it and a camper top on the back. I was sure that I saw "Grandpa's truck" on that used car lot. I threw on the brakes, circled around the block and there it was! That touch up paint had really made it look "good as new"! And the asking price was about $6000 more than I had gotten for it! I'm sure no one fell for that price, but it was gone in about a week, so somebody got a nice looking truck, and hopefully would take good care of it!

Now, I must say, I'm hankering to go to the car dealer again. This time I'm looking for a hybrid SUV. Still trying to decide what to get, but I'm seriously looking. The car bug is biting once again.

One more "car talk" story. I had one salesman who helped me with the purchase of many of my vehicles. He worked at two different dealerships, and now he sells VWs. Daughter #1 bought her new VW CC from him 2 months ago. I have loyalty, just treat me well, Mr. Car Salesman.

1 comment:

NV said...

That same dealership also sells Caddies ... so I'm very interested to hear about MonkeyGirl's experience with them. They may get business from me in the future. :-)