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The Car Crisis

I’ve got a big road trip coming up next month – driving from San Diego to the Bay Area. So right before I fell asleep last night I had cars on my mind. I went back in time to a white Trans Am I had in the 80’s. After owning two used Camaro’s, I was pretty psyched to drive my first new car. How I got this car is a story in itself, but the short version is I bought a little Sunbird type of car and it was a lemon. When we went back to the dealer, my dad asked me to leave the room, and when he came out, I was upgraded to a Trans Am. I ended up selling that car when I decided to move cross country to San Diego.

Val's Trans Am

And that was pretty much the end of my love affair with cars. Nowadays, I’ll just drive whatever is leftover in the driveway. My friends laugh when they see me driving around in my husband’s big ole Nissan Titan truck. It is a bit of an adventure – especially in narrow parking lots when a three point turn becomes a twenty point turn. My car just needs to be comfortable and reliable. Kind of like a pair of sweats. What happened to me?

I guess “it” happens to the best of us. One of my favorite shows on NPR is Click and Clack. After 35 years of telling folks how to fix their cahs, they are retiring. No more Cah Talk (Car Talk). I didn’t really care about the fixing the cah stuff, it was their Boston accent that cracked me up. And I have to wonder, did I ever sound like them?

My earliest memory of anyone noticing my accent was at my first “real” job in San Diego. One of the guys came up to me and asked me if I was from England. I wanted to say “You don’t travel much, do you?” But it being a new job and all, I replied appropriately.

So I will wrap up this rambling blog by psyching myself up for the upcoming road trip. I will make Mark Twain’s quote below my mantra. Hopefully by taking the “high” road, I won’t be a big bummer to my travel companions.

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”