It was my birthday on Monday. Tam was a sweetheart and gave me an entire weekend to do whatever I pleased. My ex used to do that, because for him, birthdays were a big-assed deal. He’d take the day off from work (when I was a stay-at-home mom), and we’d go do STUFF in the BIG CITY. Usually involved him driving while I snapped photographs from the moving vehicle because STOPPING? WHY WOULD WE WANT TO STOP JUST FOR A PHOTOGRAPH?
Actually, he would be fine with stopping, but not always where I needed to be stopped, then I’d have to jump out, run two miles, dodging traffic, just to get back to the spot where I wanted to snap the shutter. I got pretty good at car photos.
Where was I going with this? Oh, yeah…
Tam, however, never really had a big deal made of her birthdays, which always makes me a little sad. Unfortunately, she was born during a particularly cold time of year, so tooling around and doing stuff isn’t all that comfortable. I do my best, but it also comes right around the time my flood insurance is due, and, well, that’s a lump sum of pain right before the major holidays.
This year, since my birthday was on Monday, I got to pick the activities for the weekend. I had already made arrangements with Sagacious Woman to have lunch with her on Sunday, so on Saturday, Tam and I headed toward the mountains in order to allow me to reconnect with my Spirit.
(As an aside, many years ago, I went on my very first Shamanic Journey in order to find my Spirit Guides. After it was all done, everyone had the opportunity to share what they found. As we went around the circle, I became more and more embarrassed because I didn’t see any animals. All I saw was the mountain. I decided to keep that to myself, but mentioned it to the Shaman after the class was over. She smiled and told me that having a Mountain for a Guide was definitely an ok thing.)
Back to Saturday. The weather was perfect and the closer we got to the mountain, the more snow we saw. I didn’t worry, as my little red Forrester could tackle any kind of road conditions. She made it up and back like a champ and I felt renewed and invigorated. The mountains were amazing and their songs were pure balm to my weary heart and soul.
Then Sunday came. We lunched with Sagacious Woman, then on a whim, I decided I wanted to look at cars.
I love my Forrester. She was my very first new car. She was awesome, faithful, and pampered. Filthy, but pampered. She was also a manual transmission, which was fine, but I’m the only one in the family who could drive it, so…not a problem when I was living with my ex, but Tam does not drive a stick and her vehicle of choice is a mid-size pick-up truck. We can’t go anywhere as a family, unless I did the driving.
Then I began to have hip and knee trouble. It became excruciating to move my leg to operate the clutch, and a pinched nerve in my groin (yeah, that’s an ugly pain right there) made it even more difficult.
I began doing research on vehicle types, reliability, resale, everything. There we were, on my whim, looking at cars. I cannot really afford this, but my parents (who also have hip and knee issues) understood and stepped in to help me out.
I bought a car for my birthday. Way more car than I expected, but it boiled down to this: I needed a car that I could drive without pain. We also needed a vehicle that both of us could drive. Also, this is going to be my last new car for a very long time. I wanted something that would hold value for a while and not need replacing in five years. I also wanted to do this while my Subaru still had some worth. Considering, it was new in 2004 and had under 50K miles on it helped as well.
The other selling point was that I firmly believe in doing my best to reduce my fossil fuel consumption. I am now the proud owner of a bright red Prius.
Toyota calls it “Barcelona Red.” I call it “OMG! THAT IS ONE RED CAR! AND IT’S MINE!!!” red. She hasn’t told me her name yet, but that’s ok. Belle (my Forrester) waited almost two weeks before she spilled hers to me. “Majel” comes to mind when the Prius starts yammering on about the cell phone (yes, the Prius talks to me because it comes with built in blue tooth technology and insists I speak clearly in order to make a call). Um, just in case there are no Trekkies reading this, Majel is Majel Barrett, a.k.a., Mrs. Gene Roddenberry. Star Trek. Computer voice for the Enterprise. Don’t make me say any more…please. (and yes, I wrote “Trekkie” instead of “Trekker” because I’m old enough to be a Trekkie instead of a Trekker, so there, a-hen).
There you have it. My batshit crazy weekend where I made a huge decision (on my own), stepped out on a scary limb (almost by myself) and now I’m going to be a big girl and make my car payments.
Forever and ever (or the next five years, whichever comes first).