Where I write

Where I write

March 29, 2016

Obituary to a Dying Car

    A friend died recently and this made me think about obituaries, hers left out some important details or so I thought, and how I wouldn't want to leave it up to someone else to write my obituary.  When I first became a reporter, I was assigned to writing the obituaries, something at my young age I found dreary and bothersome. Death was just so boring.  Now I see that was one of my most important reporting jobs. The obituary is the last, and possibly the only, time a person might be remembered in print unless famous. 

   Next I wondered what photo I might use for my obituary which made me think of my old car which is about to die.  Easier to face my car dying than me. Besides, I have more miles left on me. I hope.  This photo above is how my Nissan 200SX looked when purchased new in 1996. I don't have the heart to show you how it looks today after 177,000 miles. Yet, I don't want to let go. I've always had a love affair with cars, some betrayed me, others I dumped, and some I've loved forever long after they died. My 1996 Nissan was reliable and sturdy and got me where I needed to go. But all good things must end.  Sigh.

My Uncle Ray and Uncle John were both car salesmen in Chicago. They always had some snazzy cars, usually  new and the size of boats, and I liked when they visited and parked at our house. I remember feeling very special because my first communion white dress matched my uncle's car. I can't remember my uncles without picturing their impressive rides.

I really liked my mother's groovy Gran Torino. Here I am on my way to high school in my purple outfit about to drive a lime green car. (with green interior) The radio speakers in that car were amazing. I could blast the Monkees or Led Zeppelin while cruising around Hoffman Estates with the other pom pom girls. Life didn't get any better than that.  I felt grown up.

Then I met my first true love. It was all mine. A 1977 Camaro. Had three miles on it when I drove it off the Chicago lot. Sigh. I miss my Camaro, or maybe I miss being a young again. Whatever. The memories I made with that car still make my heart sing. Oh to  be able to go back to those glory days. Our first loves are like that. There is nothing like that first new car of our very own. Nothing will replace my 1977 Camaro. Oh sure I know now that it is not practical. The two doors, too low to the ground, no back seat. But at the time, my Camaro was everything I hoped and dreamed. Alas, I had to let it go when there was a big hole in the floor board and the lack of air conditioning and living in Arizona made it impractical. There's that word again. Practical.
 You can tell the age of this photo as I look like my poodle Darla. Perms used to be hip. Oh but my Camaro looks gorgeous. 

The next vehicle I owned, a Dodge Mini Van, was like a bad date that never ended. I kept wanting to dump it but drove it because nothing else was available. Or so I thought. In reality, just like in dating, there were plenty of other vehicles in the sea. Toxic relationship to the max. I don't even have a photo of it. Just the word Dodge makes me cringe. Let's just say it defined the word lemon.

Then the Nissan 200SX replaced the mini van and my faith in cars was restored again. In between, I had a brief fling with a Nissan truck.  I realized I'm not a truck person. Oh trucks are fine, but unless I'm hauling hay, who needs all that extra space. The truck was easy to put on Craig's list and watch drive away.

Alas, now it is time for my Nissan 200SX to go to the junk yard or a mechanic with a lot of free time who really wants an old Nissan. Won't hold my breath on that one.

I need to do some test driving. Date around. See what's out there. And I think I've just written my Nissan's obituary. 

Finally here's my grandpa and grandma Ellickson standing proudly by their car. Wonder how fast it could go on the freeway? Wait I don't think there were freeways then. My grandparents are gone and I imagine so is the car, but oh what a good way to be remembered. I hope they enjoyed the ride. 

1 comment:

Tracy Mears said...

Wow...you did damn good getting 177K outta your Nissan...but sounds like time to put a bullet into the crankshaft and say goodbye.

Gonna go new again with that nice new warranty or buy used? I still miss my Camry and am glad Michael still has it...still look at that model longingly whenever I see a 95 ahead of me. Funny how we grow attached and I too have so many photos over the year of myself and family posed in front of the current car. They do become our friends sometimes.