Yesterday, I gave away my car.
Jacob and I don't need two to exist in the city since he normally takes the bus or his bike to work. (I hope to get a job in the Loop so I can green it to work, as well.)
We knew this when I first moved to his condo in December but it was too early then for me to get rid of all my assets on this love affair. My kick-ass apartment and much of my furniture were already gone. I had too much sense to risk having to buy a new car if things didn't work out. Luckily, my friend Tabitha had her parked car completely totaled by a passing snow plow in the middle of the night(it ended up turned around 180 degrees and in the middle of the near-by intersection). Actually, there was no proof that it was a snowplow but, come on. What else could it have been?
So, it wasn't lucky for Tabitha. But she needed just an interim car since she'd move to Minnesota after graduation and her wedding to be with her husband and wouldn't need a car there. This was lucky for us. She rented my car from me for the cost of the insurance, ensuring it would be there for the next six if I needed it. A win-win scenario.
But now, it was time to give the car away. If things don't work between Jacob and I now, I'll have much bigger things to worry about than buying a new car. And since Jacob doesn't drive stick-shift and his crappy old car (as opposed to my crappy old car) needs less work/money to get it to peak condition.
Willow Creek runs a ministry called the C.A.R.S. ministry that fixes up cars like mine and gives them to single moms that need them. They use volunteer mechanics and sell some cars that are not appropriate for families in order to raise the cash to cover their expenses. It's a pretty good non-profit model that is large enough to reap the benefits of the economies of scale. They had a tow-truck come and pick up my car this morning.
I have loved this car. It has taken me to Orcas Island and back and been a zillion places in between in the last 10 years. But after 107,000 miles it is time to say good-bye. Good-bye to the I Love Portillos sticker, the Shearwater Kayaks sticker and the Illinois Wesleyan Alumni sticker that was purchased shortly after my divorce when I was groping for an identity, any identity since I couldn't be Dennis' wife anymore. Good-bye to the slow-leaking front tire and the slow-leaking, sometimes overheating coolant system. Good-bye to the new rack and pinion steering and the prematurely new timing chain. Good-bye to stick shift, a loss I will actually mourn as I drive the automatic transition of a tiny Nissan.
Good-bye, Jolene. You have served honorably and well.
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