My car is 12 years old. I’ve had it for ten of those 12 years. It’s seen Wilkes-Barre, Convent Station, New York City, Port Clyde, Kingston, and beyond. Interiorly, it doesn’t have a great sound system. It doesn’t have power windows. It doesn’t have air conditioning. It lies about the correct time. It doesn’t know when I’ve buckled my seat belt. The suspension is going. There’s hint of spoiled milk in the air. Stickers announcing fandom: sirsy, now & zen, art & water, aic…all curl and peel; gritty and sticky on the wrong sides. Exteriorly, the body is rusting, there is hail damage on the hood, one door is a different color green thanks to a T-bone accident. Other dents from other dings – a shopping cart, a garage door, an elderly woman. More stickers announce more obsessions: Doctors Without Borders, Simmons, Gould, turtles, rank and number, hidden hippy at heart. And yet. I love this car. It was the sirsy-mobile back when I was the DD for road trips and late nights. It was the first car that announced my independence from That Guy. One less thing of HIS I had to look at (glad to be rid of discarded, spit-out fingernail clippings and rolling golf balls strewn under the seats). It was my companion when I needed to have a good cry. It suited me; was a part of me. I named it Bug.
Which is why I was deeply offended when the Subaru guy wanted to give me $200 for it. You see, it’s time to say goodbye. Kisa’s suv is getting older (aren’t we all?), and it’s time to rely on something else. My little bug just doesn’t cut it. It’s time.
Experiencing a difficult, snow-drift winter has helped me with the decision to move on from Bug. Visibility in my little Prizm wasn’t easy. Inching out beyond the eight foot snow barriers put me in the direct path of on-coming semis and balls-to-the-walls drivers not afraid of wintry weather. Getting up the icy driveway was a test of courage as I had to gun the engine and pray that I didn’t miss the mark and instead go careening out of control into Kisa or the garage. On really bad days I left Bug behind and took Kisa’s Santa Fe to work. As it became easier to leave Bug behind I knew it was time to walk away.
But, that doesn’t mean I’m not sad. I’m not a bells and whistles kind of girl. I was happy without the A/C. I didn’t mind a stereo with the speakers blown out. I was hurt when someone said “$200 is my best offer.” I needed a dealership who would respect my Bug. In the end I found him. $1,000 is his best offer. Ironically, it’s where HE used to go for service. HIS mechanic used to work there. As I say goodbye could I also be saying hello?