Tag Archives: Car

keep back!

yesterday i went wall climbing, which happens to be a ways out of town, so that provided some driving practice with friends. i did alright, except when i stalled out 3 times at the same traffic light… watching it go from green… to yellow… and red again. when i finally did go, i peeled out a bit. later in the same day i had a solid 3 second peel-out. you could smell it. i was beginning to think i’d made a huge mistake purchasing a 5-speed vehicle.but today was a new day, and i had to get out on the road. i mean, i HAD to. apparently i left my last name off one of the gazillion forms i signed at carmax, so i had to make the long journey back out there… on the crazy expressway… all… by… my… self. i took a deep breath, grabbed my roll of blue masking tape, and put a big sign across the back of my car that reads “KEEP BACK… i’m learning.” i ventured over to the church parking lot for a bit of a warm-up, feeling my way in and out of that tricky first gear, and off i went.

and i made it! without a single stall-out or peel-out! no one got on my back. i watched in my rear-view mirror as one lady died laughing after squinting to see the fine print on my home-made sign. ah, what a day.
then, on the way back to my house, i put the hatchback feature to good use with a trip to home depot. i needed a big piece of wood (2 ft deep, 4 ft long) to finish making my desk before school starts this week. can i please tell you how easy it is to fold down the seats in my groovy mazda3? oooooh so easy. i slid my desk top in, pulled the door shut, and thought, ‘that, missy, is why you have a hatchback.’ it made my day.

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the car

i bought a car today. a mazda3 hatchback with a sunroof. i like it. sure it’s a 5-speed… and sure i didn’t know how to drive a 5-speed (until an hour or two ago)… mere minor details.

the purchase:

i bought the car at carmax, which i have to say, was a pleasant experience. the guy that worked with me was definitely a car salesman, a tad annoying at times, but he was not one bit slimey. he wasn’t clever enough to be slimey, and i mean that in a good way. very what-you-see-is-what-you-get. he’d say things that were very not-smooth, which helped his credibility. it sounds like i’m trashing the guy, but seriously, i liked him. also, carmax is bending over backwards to work with my out-of-state credit union. the credit union lady told me over the phone, “girl, are you lucky. i’ve never known carmax to treat someone this good.” maybe it helped that i brought john (a priest) to test drive the car for me (while wearing his priestly collar). so john test drove it, i bought it, and then my friend aimee drove it home. woohoo!

the lesson:

i had a crash course in driving standard. lat ran to my house, we drove back to his house, did a couple laps around his neighborhood (i stalled maybe 10 times on my first left-hand turn), picked up friends for dinner, drove back to lat’s… and then i was on my own. it’s only a 3-4 mile drive, but it’s not direct. anyway, i made it home without stalling once, thanking God for the lack of traffic. 1st gear is really tricky, but the rest isn’t too bad.

so now i have a car, but i’ll be riding my bike to my morning appointment… maybe driving standard will keep me from driving too much. the bike life has been good.

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car shopping

really, i ought to say virtual car shopping… as i’ve yet to test drive a single vehicle… but in my imagination, i’ve narrowed down my options to the perfect car. the 2007 nissan versa hatchback sl… with a sunroof. i’ve only found ONE with a sunroof so far, and it’s in dulles, which makes me think i should fly up to dc and visit lots of friends on the drive back south. sounds like a week of fun, right? and i’d need that week to learn how to drive stick, as the ONE versa sl with sunroof happens to be a manual. no worries. i actually think i’d be a great manual driver, given 2 or 3 days of roadtripping and couch surfing. sadly, i don’t have time for such ventures… not for another 2 weeks, at least… and by then my currently “perfect” car will likely be sold… eventually replaced by another potentially “perfect” set of wheels. i mean, i’ll be driving this car for the next 10 years, so it’s got to be just right. for now, though, the bus and bike are still fun. liberating, even. still, the possibility of purchasing a car in the near future looms large.

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car for sale

okay, i really need to sell my car by august 7. a 2001 vw cabrio convertible glx: air conditioning, leather, dual front air bags, front side air bags, alloy wheels, cruise control, ABS (4-wheel), power steering, AM/FM stereo, cassette, multi compact disc, power windows, power door locks, tilt wheel.

very well cared for. mostly highway miles (102k miles… she’s got another 100k in her i’m sure). silver with black top and black interior.
you know i love my car. in fact, part of me doesn’t want to sell it. but why let it sit there for 2 years while i’m in africa? this car needs a loving owner. the kbb value is $7,800. help me out? spread the word!!

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