Monday, February 3, 2014

Adventures with our new Toyota

Warning: this will be boring.  I write here selfishly, for me.  I have this desire to get it out of my head. Write it down. Type it up. whatever. and online journaling is one avenue. I am afraid to reveal too much. But, I have a desire to vomit it up somewhere.  Husband is busy at work. He doesn't want to hear it.  He has no time.

But, to help me remember.

Fun with numbers.  odometer numbers.  If only the odometer also recorded whereall we went to help jog my memory.  I find it sad when I can't remember what we did last year for Ground Hog's Day, or Valentine's Day, for example.  And having just visited with the toddler grandsons, the grands, I want to remember the sweet moments with them.  Conversations with a three year old.  No time for buttons with an almost two year old.

But, lets back up to December.  We saw a need.  Our middle son was needing a second car.  And I could tell that Bob wanted to help them find a good, reliable car.  And the thought occurred to me, that our 2007 Toyota minivan, with 90,000 was a good, reliable used car.  The dealerships would insult us with an offer for what it was/is truly worth.  We might have kept it forever, but the seatbelts stabbed me.  It was so painful on long trips.  I had been going round and round with the dealership about this issue, but was brushed off.

But, buy a new car? oh. my. so expensive. And Bob liked the idea.  And Bob has limited time, but he worked so hard making spreadsheets, putting me in all kinds of cars to see what fit.  (not commie cars, however.  not a cadillac, as caddies are GM, hence, commie cars---that government bailout thing)  Even as Bob's Dad would never buy or consider a Toyota---that WW2/Japan war---we have our standards.

I do have a bucket list---nothing big. I'd like to sit in a limo, and a hummer.  And if not in this life, I can wait until heaven home.  Not that we will need hummers nor limos in heaven...  but that is another story.

Bob found such a deal. He likes to shop online. Less drama.  Salesmen on showroom floors are so pushy, shady, snake oil salesmen.  I want to forget the huge, threatening, arrogant a-hole that blocked our path onto a showroom floor.  he bragged that they were the best.  yeah, well, I used to bring our 2007 there for service, but I am gonna think twice, nay three times before doing that again...just because of one guy.  It was a rainy day... who did we want to see, he asked.  sorry. we are here to see cars, not form relationships.

I can think of a thousand witty comebacks AFTER.  I so wish I had handled sassy salesmen with humor.  Life is too short.

Bob researched cars, dealerships, warranties, maintenance, financing, you, name it, he had it charted out.
One Saturday, he had sent out invitations for bids, and oh. my. the phone started ringing off the wall.  The salesmen were DESPERATE to get us IN their showrooms.  They kept calling and calling.  Bob only dwelt with the ones that ANSWERED his questions online.  He called a few for clarification, but once you do that, they have your number, and will call and call and call.   Game over.  (they are still calling)

We gifted the 2007 at Christmas time because it was a convenient time for us and them.  We depended on our not-so-dependable 1997 plymouth.  This workhorse needed retiring, but it was still running.  It somehow passed inspection---and leaked fluids, so every few days, sometimes once or twice a week, fluids must be added.  checked.  in cold.  in sleet. in dark of night...  and we laughed as we wondered if this was the day the car would die.  Was this the day the transmission would fall out?  or a major belt break??  Sometimes it would lurch---a reminder not to stray too far.  Hard for me to drive, as I no longer fit in it.  Shocks are gone, and windows need driving around, you think a window is open.  But, it gets Bob to the train station.  Worth only $1000.00 because it runs, but worth it to us because it is a second car.  But, now I doubt I should leave Bob alone with it.  What if he was stranded at the train station?  What if I was gone overnight, and that was the night he had to take a cab to work or home??  We had a plan.  If the car died, we planned on renting until we found the best deal.   Call me worst case scenerio mom.  I refused to be stranded at the chiropractor or store.  So, I stayed home.  Bob offered to let me drive him to the station...but only if I were desperate.  I did not invision anything I needed that bad.  Most things can be shopped online.  Hello, Tazo tea people??  Some things are "in-store" only but, Bob would help me shop in the evening.

We made it almost a month on our one iffy car.  I wanted to be ready to walk out of dealerships.  Bob got some downright insulting bids, mixed messages---we wondered if the dealership managers were trying to be purposely mean to their salesman?  were some salesmen promising the moon just to try and get the deal?  When one said it would be easy to fix the front seat belt---I got hopes up, and wondered why this same dealership had been so difficult for six years with me??  Why couldn't they trade out or shorten the seatbelt receptacle on our old 2007??

We did not need fancy.  We specifically looked for one without a center console.  Salesmen kept stuffing us into fancy, high end, cars with consoles.  But, we noticed some fleet ready vans without consoles on our own.  We were not allowed to sit in those.  Those were already sold.  Already promised.  But, we knew they existed.

Bob found two 2013s---from last year's line, but stripped down.  We wondered about their history.  The bisque only had 13 miles on it.  tempting.  If we ever have trouble with the one we got, we can say, we should have gotten "the bisque".  But, we chose the white one with a light gray interior.  Only 57 miles on it.  my age!  81 when we got home.  round trip to the chiro is 49 miles.

I was so nervous picking up a brand new car.  Like a new slate.  Like a new canvas.  No dings or nicks.

The drive home---the first time I drove it, was in the DARK, and scary enough, but there was a truck ahead of me that lost a couch or mattress from a futon or something...if I had been 30 seconds faster....yikes.  Bob was ahead of me, swerved to miss it...and I was singing---praying aloud, please, Lord, drive with me.

The wind could catch the door on the 2007 and wack whatever it was parked next to...and I need lots of room to get in and out, because I am fat. obese.  huge.  yes. I. am. fat.  gross.  And I am picky about where I park so I don't ding doors.  or poles when gassing the car.  or rocks, curbs.   It drives me nuts when Bob parks too close to another car when there are empty spots farther away.  I need the exercise.  Let us park out by ourselves so that we do not inconvenience anyone with my slowness.

Now we have put the first thousand miles on it.  Our youngest grandson was in the hospital for 3 days, and we drove over to visit him, now on the mend, home. safe. and back to playing and driving his mother nuts.

We have tried many routes the six hour distance to the grands.  Our son prefers the freeway route, and while it does have more eating establishment choices, and gets you there quicker, the last 40 miles require a two lane through the forest, in the dark. no shoulders. no room for error.  I HATE that stretch.  I would rather go out of my way and stay on a better road.  We came home a more southern route to avoid the ice and snow front coming down from the northwest.  I really like 190.  wowo.  good shoulders.  THREE Walmarts.  So, anything you needs, there is a Walmart.  We were in a hurry to get home ahead of the storm, and we made it fine.  Only saw one pickup spun out.  Should have come home 360 not 820.  820 in Fort Worth was just a little too far into the stormfront.

A Walmart on a route is more comforting to me than a Seven-Eleven.   We stopped at Bucky's.  I don't get it.  crowded.  small stalls.  yucky.   Good food at Texas Burger.  We made it home in time for the halftime of the Superbowl.  Had to turn off the lyrics---why are we celebrating hurting women?  Give it up? I don't think so.

It was hard to find the superbowl on the radio...but we knew the Seattle Seahawks were winning.  Wasn't it 22 to zero at halftime?  43-8 by the end, right?

the superbowl ads were released a little ahead now.  So, i had seen some of them.

Went to take a bath, and low and behold, our electrician son had installed a fancy new light fixture in the bathroom.   He likes to surprise us.  I kept wondering if he had been by, as I saw a few things out of place.  thought maybe I was losing my mind---did not remember leaving a dishrag there...and what was that on the floor??  a piece of metal?? like a acorn hat?  I cleaned the potty before I left---did I strip the screw heads off when I cleaned the potty??  that is when I lifted my head and noticed the new light fixture.  oh. my.

we called to thank our son, and he said they were leaving the rodeo---so new worry---they were where the icy overpasses...


joyce said...

I also want to remember going back to Toyotaville---where I was very pregnant with our middle son. in fact, on our due date. full circle.

and I want to remember the connection to our firstborn's fish year at A&M. writing the check. fun. I need to apologize to him. Thanks for the sweet memory and yes, you will write a check for that amount someday. ha.

and our grandson was having trouble with "Hannie's car" as he associates cars with driver/owners. remember. too cute.

joyce said...

And I want to thank my parents again for giving us the stationwagon when our boys were little so that we had a second car. They set a fine example.

joyce said...

And I want to thank my parents again for giving us the stationwagon when our boys were little so that we had a second car. They set a fine example.

joyce said...

And I want to thank my parents again for giving us the stationwagon when our boys were little so that we had a second car. They set a fine example.