There are a lot of things that could be fixed about my car. It growls majorly when it’s cold, the colder the louder. The brakes squeal occasionally. Aesthetically, things are falling apart a little bit: the panel on the inside of the driver’s side door is coming off the frame…I never replaced that piece my brother knocked out one day in 2003…I spilled milk in there last week and didn’t get a chance to clean it up. It needs a new quart of oil every couple months (where’s it going? I don’t know). I did just put a new air filter in, so I feel good about that. The windshield wipers need to be replaced. It needs a wash, bad. And a general tune-up.
I’m not the only one who’s impressed that A) my parents kept it for me during my NYC hiatus, and B) I’m driving it around now. This is the car I drove in high school, man. I got this car in 2001 and have put something like 100,000 miles on it since then. I’m so grateful that it’s holding together and still running pretty well, but I’m not fooling myself that I’ll have it for another ten years. I talk to it the way you’d talk to a stubborn horse that’s getting on in years: “Come on baby, I know you can do it…good job! I’m so proud of you!” I’ll be letting go of a big piece of my history when I finally have to break down and get a “new” car (especially since I think I’ll probably be abandoning the manual transmission for the more responsible and practical automatic transmission).
But there are days, like today, when it’s warmed up just enough to cut out the growl, and I drop it into fourth at just the right speed, and the road is just hilly and curvy enough to be fun, but the speed limit is still 50, and I feel like it just wants to GO. The old horse has one last race left in her and she wants to run it. And I’m like, “Yeah, okay, I’m 19 again, let’s do it, let’s just go.”