BFAM Day 19: Like a Rock
And speaking of suffering: My truck. My 1998 Ford Ranger. My truck that has moved me to and from New York, to and from DC, and has gotten me to and from Nashville a dozen times in the past six months. A truck so beat up, so used, abused, and obnoxious that, until yesterday, I was 100 percent sure it would never fail me, would never give up. Sure it’s got dents and scratches, sure almost none of the dashboard lights work, sure the dome light is busted, sure the driver’s side door won’t unlock from the outside, sure the iPod jack doesn’t work, sure the windshield is cracked all the way across, sure the muffler makes a rattling noise that makes me feel a little bit like a hillbilly when I stop at a stoplight and the cars on either side of me stare.
In the six years I’ve owned it, the odometer has rolled its way around and around, until finally coming to rest somewhere in the neighborhood of 119,000 miles. Almost half the distance from the Earth to the Moon. And yesterday, while I was stopped at a red light on the way home from work with the windows down, whistling in the warmth of the setting sun and enjoying the end of another day in a cubicle, it happened. That which has never happened to me and which I was not prepared for and which threw me into a fit of paranoia and panic:
I racked my brains for some kind of clue. Was there an unusual noise? Yes. Oh, but that’s just my tail pipe. Did I need an oil change? I’ve still got about 400 miles left before I’m due. Was my car smoking? No. Do I need a new air filter? No, I just changed it three months ago. Can I still drive? The light turned green and I accelerated normally.
What? What could possibly cause Ye Olde Faithful truck to suddenly need a check-up? Whatever it is, it’s got me scared. I was planning on getting my oil changed tonight in preparation for my drive home this weekend, but now it looks like I’m going to have to get everything checked out.
My truck is barely worth the cost of the gas I fill it with every two weeks. If this turns out to be something major, I’m thinking the Toyota Yaris I was planning on buying sometime in the future just got a whole lot closer. Much as it hurts me to think about depleting my savings on a down-payment (ahead of schedule) and adding yet another bill to my monthly tally, I know that I can afford it and that my truck will, eventually, need to go to the Vehicle Graveyard. So who knows, maybe I’ll do a little car shopping while I’m home this weekend, and see what I can work out.
I’m thinking shiny red. Or bright blue. What do you think?
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Tags: BFAM, OMG, truck