a bench with a view

a bench with a view

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

I am no longer a soccer mom

Aren't the soccer moms the ones that drive mini vans?

Forgive me if you are (were) a soccer mom and drove (drives) a mini van.

I drove a mini van since 1989.  Is there an intervention for such a thing?

Two Chevy Astro vans and an Oldsmobile Silhouette.

The Oldsmobile Silhouette was purchased August 28, 1999.  It was a necessary purchase, one we didn't want to make, but the newly paid off 1996 Chevy Astro van had been totalled 18 days prior (not my fault).

The Silhouette was 17 years old with 93,695 miles on it.  It got a lot of driving when the kids were going to school, this activity, that activity. This vacation. This move. This son learning how to drive. This son taking it when his car was broken down.  You know the story.

The last few years it barely got driven. There were times when we lived in Prescott before we moved to Phoenix that it didn't get driven for 2-3 weeks at a time. The battery would go dead during those times but always started with a charge.

It needed work, but it still got you around for short distances. I rejoiced that it made the drive from Prescott to Phoenix without breaking down.

It was the last connection with that silly corgi of ours. He had many a car ride in it and had journeyed from Montana to Southern California in it, several places in Southern California too.  It still had corgi hair in it (a gift that keeps on giving, even when you vacuum diligently).

But alas.

Time to let it go.

We needed another reliable vehicle. Hubby drives 50 miles one way to work. His Nissan Versa is great and good on gas, but it was time to get another vehicle to drive on the weekends to give the Versa a bit of a rest.

It was time to say goodbye to the Silhouette.

Hubby did his research and based on what he thought we needed, he thought the Nissan Rogue was a good thing to buy.

He did a lot of research on prices, models, etc.

We went to the dealership this past Saturday. Prepared to get the deal we wanted. We had printed paperwork of what the car was going for, the abundance of cars in the dealership, and the fact that the Rogue which had a previous selling day of 51 days went up to 71 days.

We got an inexperienced sales person. Three weeks into the job. He learned a lot in the negotiations. We were his first car sold there at the dealership. He remarked he wished he had worn a tie that day because I guess it is customary for a salesman to cut his tie when making his first car sale. A delightful young man. I wish him and his family well.

We got a really great deal. Thankful to hubby for his research and his negotiations. I stay out of it. I tell him "you do your thing" (after all that is what he does for a living) and I tell him "when its time to walk, you let me know and I'll be right behind you." I knew we needed a car but I didn't want a car payment so if he said "its time to go" I would have been right there behind him.

What I didn't realize was how sentimental I would be towards the Silhouette. Cleaning it out Saturday morning before we went in, I saw the bits of a corgi's fur. And then I remembered so many wonderful memories of that van. My kids grew up in that van. Seventeen years. Low mileage. At the dealership they were amazed at the condition of it and the low mileage.

I cried a few tears and said to our salesman when we got there "I changed my mind" (We had been in the previous week to look at Rogues and do some fact finding).

It was a good vehicle. It never left me stranded and it needed minor repairs.

This Rogue potentially could be the last vehicle we purchase. Its sobering.  But if we keep it as long as the Silhouette, it really very well could be.

And the car payment really isn't that bad.

And it rides similar to the van.

Now I just have to drive it more.

Working at home, I never drive. But it will be the weekend vehicle and if I need to run an errand during the week.  I would imagine it too will have low mileage during its life.

Goodbye van. Thank you for being so faithful to us.


joeh said...

I never owned a minivan, but I always thought they made a lot of sense. I have trouble saying good by to an old car as well.

Blue Grumpster said...

It is customary for a salesman to cut his tie when making his first car sale? See, that I did not know.

Pat Hatt said...

Never knew that about the tie. Would suck if it were an expensive tie lol Vehicles can sure hold many a memory indeed, but when it's time, it's time. Good you got a great deal too, HATE car payments though haha

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

With the large family I had, a van was a necessity. We had more than one before all the family left home then I finally got a car. It really felt strange to drive a car after years of driving a van. Congrats on your new care ! Enjoy !

Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

Amazing, isn't it, how a car can spark so many emotions? It brings back memories of places we've been and things we've done with loved ones, and even alone. The one we are driving right now is going to be hard to say goodbye to. We've had it since 2003 and not only did my girls grow up in it, but it has taken us to so many places and moved us a couple of times. It has 'lived' a very interesting life so far!

Ann Bennett said...

My dad used to name his cars. I'm presently driving the Willie Maude II.

Memories and objects do combine. I drive by my childhood home fairly regular. The neighborhood has changed but not my memories.

Maria Zannini said...

We have a 1997 Dodge Durango. Best SUV truck we ever had. We'd like to replace it (300,000 miles!), but the Durangos they have now pale in comparison.

Intense Guy said...

It is a hard thing - having GOOD memories that cause so much sadness.

"[T}hat silly corgi" wouldn't want you to be sad. He'd want his human pack member(s) to be happy and well. He knows he will see you again.

Joanne Noragon said...

I had to "upsize" when I acquired kids, four years ago. I could no longer afford a minivan, which would have been nice, but I got a crossover that held three children well and four in a squeeze. It had fewer than 10,000 miles on it when I bought it, and is pushing 70 now. The thing about kids--bicycles are no longer adequate.

Adam said...

My mom drove one for many years, but I convinced her to let it go. Saved countless dollars in gasoline

Chatty Crone said...

Congrats to the new car and I do remember your beloved corgi!

Joanne said...

now you've gone rogue...but you can be soccer mom emeritus. You earned the badge. Enjoy your new wheels and pile on some miles with adventures!!

Saleslady371 said...

It looks like I'm not the only one going through "letting go" lessons! Loved your story and how you tied the vehicle to the last thing that reminds you of the Corgi. So cute how you share your feelings with us and we can relate! I rarely drove the van we had when the kiddos were little. I was happy to have a small, economical car.

Liz A. said...

It's funny how attached we get to things, isn't it? I know exactly how you feel. It's hard to let go. All the things its been through with you. But the new car is what you need. You'll always have the memories.

Ruth said...

My daughter just bought a Nissan Versa.
Glad you got a good deal. Dealers around here don't seem to negotiate much.

Paula Kaye said...

I have never owned a mini van! I did own a Ford LTD station wagon once. It was a huge car. My car is a 2001 with only about 120,000 miles but it needs to be replaced. I don't want to think about car payments. I'm hoping it holds out until I sell my house (which isn't on the market yet) Good memories you shared !!

Juli G said...

I too will be in the market for anew car. I'll likely go back to a Subaru. Oldest will need a car soon, and Youngest will follow soon after.

Good luck with your new ride. Ironically even though I am only 7 miles from work, I put an insane amount of miles on the car.

Bobbi and Gracie said...

That's a long time to own a vehicle and I can see why it was so hard to say goodbye. Great choice for a replacement! I have heard many good things about the Rogue. Corgi fur.. more great memories. Enjoy your new ride!!

Mevely317 said...

Those Rogues are certainly styling! It seems I see them everywhere on my commute.

So, I was doing A-OK until you mentioned the Corgi fur. I'm pretty sure Tom doesn't know, but I keep a stash of Caraleigh's fur in a little heart-shaped box in my 'ish' room. Crazy, isn't it?

yaya said...

I totally understand! That's amazing that you never hit 100,000 miles! My Impala is 15yrs old and sports 175,000 miles. We've been hoping to get it to my retirement in 2yrs but we've had some repairs this year and it's not reliable on trips. I only drive it to work. Jack's little Jeep is good but not on a long haul to Chicago. We usually just rent for a weekend on those trips. But that's getting old as prices for car rental has risen. I love my car and I too will be sad to bid it farewell...maybe this year...we'll see. When I think about trading it in I feel so bad. Probably a new car smell will take away that feeling? Enjoy your new ride and the new memories you'll have with it!

Birgit said...

It's amazing how many memories can be in a car. We think of a house but never a car. It is sad to see a vehicle go especially when you shared it with your fur baby. Did you keep a bit of fur in a baggie for a memory box?.

Victoria Zigler said...

It's funny what can spark memories, and how even the happiest of memories can sometimes make us sad, especially when we're having to let something connected with them go.

Your furry baby will be waiting for you when it's time for you to join him across the rainbow bridge. In the meantime, enjoy your new car.

Denise said...

I was a soccer mom and we had a van. Even had a big custom van at one point. What I fail to understand is why folks who live. in condos with no kids, grandkids or pets drive one.

baili said...

old cars become like our habits which are quite hard to leave but yes if the habit starts troubling you then it is obvious decision to get a new one and say goodbye to your old friend .
hope you will not miss it for much longer

Elizabeth said...

It is interesting that we can become emotionally attached to a vehicle. The memories live on even if the car dies. That happened with my first car, I might have to use it for a future post :) The first vehicle I drove was my mom's Mazda van. I can't imagine myself as a soccer mom, I think I would use a small SUV, like a Honda CR-V or Toyota Rav-4, if I had kids.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Such a loving post and I hope that mini van finds a sweet new home. Thank you for sharing your heart and tears with us Betty.

Jerralea said...

I love vans, myself. We've had 4 over the years. My kids made fun of us all the time, being empty-nesters with a van. We finally did get a SUV - but we still have a van as a second vehicle.

I understand sentimentality for a much-loved vehicle. When my beloved Blueberry van had to go, I mourned for days.

DMS said...

I needed a car and I happen to get a used minivan- though I am not a mom or a soccer mom. It isn't my ideal vehicle, but it has been getting the job done so far. I have had it a few years and it looks like I need to find something more reliable soon.

I can totally relate to feeling sad about saying goodbye to a good car! I have had that feeling a few time before. :)

Haddock said...

This is something new to me - to cut the tie when making the first car sale.
I too had a van (our first four wheeler) Traded it for a Wagoner.

Linda said...

Your van sure did serve its purpose. Glad you got a deal on your new vehicle, enjoy making new memories!

Lowcarb team member said...

It is amazing how we can get attached to our cars ... I even used to name mine!
I must admit the older I get I'm just so pleased to have a reliable car that gets me from 'A' to 'B'.

All the best Jan

Debby said...

I love minivans! I like sitting up high and I love all that space. I'll even forgo gas milegae for a minivan. Years ago, we had a VW camper/bus. My husband took that to work. I had the station wagon.(Remember those?) Then some years later, when I was a nanny, I drove my first minivan. It was a Honda. LOVED IT. We then traded our little car for a minican, a KIA Sedona which is now histroy due to a auto accident. Currently I am driving a dodge sport grand caravan and I love it. It has space for my garage sale, thrift store projects, and my dog. My husband drives a Subaru Forester - that's a fun vehicle, too.

Aneta said...

Oh, I've had favorite vehicles, too, and I was surprised HOW attached I would get to them. I'm pretty sure I didn't shed tears when I said goodbye to my last minivan, but one vehicle that will always have a special place in my heart is my 2003 Rav 4. I LOVED that vehicle. It is now my daughter's and I drive a Honda Civic. It just made sense to purchase it when it came available. I am surprisingly quite happy with the Civic, especially the Bluetooth capabilities! :) But the RAV will always be my favorite vehicle. Enjoy your new Rogue. There will always be a place in your heart for your favorite van, I'm sure!

Bijoux said...

I was a soccer mom and drove a Honda Odyssey for 13 years. I was happy to get rid of it because it was a terror to drive in the snow.

My daughter owns a Rogue and likes it for the storage as she's a traveling nurse.

jack69 said...

We have drove vans for yeas. We gave our last two to our sons. I miss the van. It is the most versatile vehicle made. I never understood the 'stigma?' or 'it is not sporty' attitude. The Mini van is the best over all vehicle.

Smart to do the research before making the BIG purchase.

Danielle L Zecher said...

We traded my old car (a 1999 Toyota Camry with over 200,000 miles) in last year. We bought a new Camry. I was, and still am, really happy with the new car, but it was a little hard to hand over the keys to the old one.

The old one was the only car I've ever bought totally by myself. Not only was it the first car I didn't have a co-signer for, but I went to the dealership and picked it out completely on my own. At the time, that was a very empowering thing for me to do.

It also had a lot of memories; I drove it to my first date with Nick, did lots of animal rescue transports in it, and it just felt like a lot of my life happened in/around that car.

It was the right time to replace it, though, and I'm sure one day the new (it still feels new over a year later) will have a lot of memories too.

I hope you're enjoying your new ride!

Kat said...

Aww. Isn't it funny how you can become attached to something like a vehicle? I was the same way when I had to get rid of my Saturn (I couldn't fit all three of my kids in it with their carseats). It was very sad to me because I have had it a long time (from when I was still single, into my marriage, onto my first two kids).
I imagine that I will be sad to get rid of my current minivan. I had a minivan before this one but it was a pain in the tush. I actually really love my current minivan and when I replace it I will be sad. As you said, so many memories.

Here's hoping your new vehicle brings you as many wonderful memories and safe travels as you last!

Wendy said...

No minivans in our family. We have had our share of SUVs though and pick up trucks, something to haul kids and a horse trailer. We do nothing for the environment because we are unwilling to sacrifice comfort. We try to make up for that in other ways. It is sobering to think you have bought your last car ever. Wonder if we have?

SweetMarie said...

I never had a minivan, but always had suvs and still have my 2005 Navigator and I still love it. after we finally purchase a home we may buy a smaller suv and keep our current one. hubby has a car that is for driving to work and back only. we do like Nissan, the Rogues are cute and sporty looking...enjoy yours!