Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Not So Automatic Transition

I bought my Toyota Celica right around my birthday in August 1998. It was Renaissance Red, low slung and responsive with a five speed manual transmission and a moon roof. An extremely cool car.

Because I purchased it with money from my mom’s estate, I named it Esmeralda, the name she had given to her favorite car, a little gray Plymouth.

Esmeralda took me all around Chicago, on adventures in the surrounding states, and to the Cattaraugus Reservation in upstate New York. Packed to the gills, she brought me west to my new home in Colorado. Then up to Yellowstone, Wyoming, and Montana, and south into New Mexico.

We were a team.

Recently, we became estranged. I felt less sure of her – and, I suppose, she of me. She wasn’t as sure-footed as I (now 14.5 years older) needed her to be. And low slung was now more dangerous than sexy. Both the CD player and radio were problematic.

So. I began looking around and online. Here in Colorado, half the population seems to drive Subarus, so I looked at Subarus. And found one, an XV Crosstrek, with four-wheel drive, six speed automatic transmission. It’s at least a foot further off the ground than my Celica. It is Venetian Red (more burgundy than its predecessor) and has snazzy wheels and a moon roof. Both the CD player and radio work quite well.

It’s in my garage. We’re getting used to each other. It’s nice to be able to see other cars at intersections and to reach tollbooths and drive-through mailboxes and nice to have room for passengers.  It doesn’t look like an old lady’s car. But it doesn’t look like an Esmeralda. I’m still not sure of the name. Perhaps Sam --definitely male (because of the height and heft).

 We’re going through the normal period of adjustment but I think -- down the road – we will be a team.

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