Wednesday, May 11, 2011

So Long, Faithful Friend

I'm a little weepy as I write this. But so excited! But a little verklempt. But smiling from ear to ear! But sad. But...

Okay, I'll quit now. You get the idea. You know the thwarted dream? The thing I wanted so desperately a few days ago? Hey, guess what? We're getting it!

I know, I know, I was being all chin-up and stiff-upper-lip so you thought you had heard the end of the story. Hahahaha! You don't know me very well, do you? My drooping chin and quivering upper lip prevailed and today I can reveal that the thing is a new car!

Well, it's new to us at least. At the MomQueenBeen house we drive our cars until they no longer move forward, then we drive them in reverse for a few years, then we think about trading them in. Husband and I have known for some time that our faithful Suburban wouldn't be reliable forever. After all, when we bought it 13 years ago it already was five years old, and had 80,000 miles under its tread. Now it's 18 years old, and this is the odometer:

Impressive, no?

Boy#1 was 11 when we bought this car, so it quite literally carried our children through their childhoods, or at least through their teens. It has spent countless hours ferrying children to school events, and soccer games, and weekends at grandparents' houses. It has pulled a trailer thousands of miles to the perfect campsite (and to some that were less perfect), and heard a million road songs and books read aloud.

When Husband called the salesman to tell him that he had hit the number we had agreed was our absolute top limit we could manage, I suddenly was seized by nostalgia. I could barely manage a smile when the deal was sealed. And what about the Boys? Wouldn't they feel terrible that we had sent this huge part of their childhood off to "live on a farm in the country" (wink-wink) without a chance for them to say good-bye?

I texted them. "Guys, I have an announcement. We just got a new (used) car! 2003 Ford Escape. Low mileage, 4WD, bun warmers. It's just what I prayed for."

Boy#2 replied: Ooh, exciting. When you said that you had an announcement, I was expecting a little brother or something, but this is pretty cool, too.

So not much sentiment there. Then I went to clean the detritus of 13 years out from under the seats, and to photographically document this transition.

Good-bye, chrome that's been peeling since we bought you! Thanks for hanging in there!

Good-bye, front license plate that's been crumpled for four years ever since Boy#1 rear-ended that guy on the bypass!

Good-bye, headliner that's developed leprosy and started draping down over our heads when we drive!

Good-bye spare fuses that we keep in the glove compartment because the wonky wiring on the trailer's lights mean we blow a fuse every time we back it up!

I'm looking forward to parking in a single parking space, though, and to dropping to double-digit gas fill-ups (yes, the last one in the Suburban was $124.76), and to the moonroof, but you served faithfully and I won't forget.

Good-bye, Suburban. You were faithful, old friend.

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