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Author Topic: My Dad's car  (Read 915 times)
MooseMom
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« on: February 26, 2019, 10:18:12 AM »

I am upset and am being self-indulgent in posting this, but I am hoping that writing about my tale of woe will help me to feel better.  Sort of like lancing a boil.

My dad loved cars.  We never had posh cars, but we would have interesting sports cars.  Whenever it came time to sell his beloved car so that he could get a new one, he would actually interview the potential buyer.  He'd stick with the same car for years.

For some years after having the same car for a longish time, my dad spent quite a few months on trying to decide if he wanted a new car.  He finally decided that he did, and so he took quite a few MORE months before he bought a brand new 2002 Acura.

He died 4 months later.

My mother drove a 1992 Toyota Camry station wagon.  She kept that car and started driving the Acura.  She loved that car for obvious reasons.  One day when she was at our house on the Gulf Coast, an uninsured driver smashed into her, and the car sustained a lot of expensive damage.  She didn't care; she found a specialist mechanic of some kind who rebuilt the car and even rebuilt its computer system.

Both of my parents are now gone, but through various circumstances, I have both of their cars.  I drive the station wagon (I've received several offers to buy it), and my husband drives the Acura, my dad's car.  Both are maintained by our magically gifted mechanic.

Last week, the Acura's steering wheel started to stick badly, so my husband took it in to have it looked at.  The pump that supplied fluid to the steering column needed replacing; the part cost $10.  It was replaced, and one of the employees drove the car around the block to make sure it was steering properly...and he ran a stop sign and totaled our car.  The frame is damaged, so effectively it is a total loss for us.  The car itself is no longer worth much, but sentimentally it means a lot to me, and now I have to let it go.  It could be repaired in theory, but it would cost thousands more than the car is worth.

So, that's my tale of woe.  In the grand scheme of things, it is next to meaningless, but it makes me feel bad.

And now we need a new car.

But at least I still have my mother's station wagon.
 :(
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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
Riki
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« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2019, 11:44:52 AM »

I understand completely.

My Dad's father never bought anything for himself.  With 6 kids, he was always looking after them.  Once they were grown and married (most of them anyway) any extra money he had went towards things for my grandmother, or for us.

In 1990, he splurged.  He bought himself a brand new Ford f-150.  He drove it till he died in 2000, and my grandmother sold it to a friend of my dad's.  He drove it for another 10 years or so before he decided to sell it too.  My dad bought it back.  It no longer runs, and sits in my brother's back yard.  I have a feeling that is it's permanent home.
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lulu836
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« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2019, 08:14:04 PM »

I can relate.  On the way to D one day,I totaled my van.  I had a stroke and ran up a curb and flipped over.  I was not hurt badly even though I was not wearing a seatbelt.  I will always wish I still  had that van.
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PrimeTimer
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« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2019, 08:31:11 PM »

Sorry this happened, MM. When we lose something sentimental to us I think it's worth grieving over. Give yourself the time you need. Bad enough that we wreck cars ourselves or have fender benders but worse when it was caused by someone else. Feels like being robbed. In your case, you are suffering a double-whammy. Take care, we're here for you. 
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« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2019, 09:49:02 AM »

MooseMom, your feelings are not meaningless at all. We have certain emotional attachments to specific items especially when they were so linked with someone so important to us. Don't consider it a tale of woe but rather, there is some grieving going on too.

I have a bit of a similar story.

My grandfather bought a umm, large (hahaha) U.S. made car when we moved here. I guess somewhere in his heart, in reminiscing or something, he wanted an American car like a boat. He couldn't drive it soon soon after he bought it and my parents wanted to sell it for parts. It was like a late 80s model or something. But, sentimental me, said no, I would drive it, because it belonged to my grandfather. That car was the last link to the completely capable man I knew growing up as a kid.

My friends and I had a good time with it. We called it a Pimp Car because it was big and like students, we'd drive around blasting music. It had an old skool velveteen interior (red!) so naturally we had to jazz it up. It was built like a tank and actually had a hardcore metal bumper! To this day, my friends still laugh how that car's bumper hooked onto another car and literally lifted it up. What a car!

But, it was old and sick a lot, just like its previous owner. Since I had an emotional attachment to the car, I had to keep it going because it was "my grandfather's car." Turns out it might have been vicarious hopes through a car. If I just keep giving it parts and money, I could keep it running. Sort of like if I just did the best caregiving I could, that I could keep my grandfather alive for as long as possible. Like you, I found a magician of a mechanic, who could keep the car rolling, but he was of advanced age too, so he's no longer in the world today either. I guess I didn't mind having an old car that needed help because at one time, this certain garage was FULL of hot mechanics. Like, it was either kismet or a job requirement at the time. So, it was so fun to go there, flirt and get a date or two. Sadly, it's no longer the same caliber of workers there so.....  :lol; But now I'm thinking back and signing to a time when I actually FELT young.

And then the worst day happened: poor old car was stolen. Old school cars are a hot-wirer's dream. I felt so upset and violated. It was as if someone stole a piece of my heart and then, I needed to explain to my grandfather, the car got stolen. Naturally, he blamed me, it was my fault. The cops found it a week later... totalled. I had a wrecker tow it to my magician mechanic's place so I could at least see, what, if anything, could be done. Nope. The stupid _______ of _______ ripped up all that red velveteen, stole the cheap kite I kept in the backseat and a pair of heels I left in there. (Don't ask...) All that could be done was that the poor old car had to be sent for scrap and I got a check....  which I gave to my grandfather.

Now both are gone....  and it's always a reminder that nothing stays the same.
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MooseMom
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« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2019, 12:11:26 PM »

Riki, that's a nice story about your grandfather's F-150.  Does your brother have any plans for it?

lulu836, OMG, you had a STROKE while driving your van?  Here I am just blathering away about a lump of metal while YOU had a STROKE!  That's the stuff of vehicular nightmares.

PrimeTimer, thanks for that.  We're probably just going to buy a used, reliable car, ie, boring, which may be just as well as I won't be able to have any real affection for it.  My father used to tease me because I always named my cars all throughout my life, but my mechanic at the time sure showed HIM because he claimed that cars that have names run better and last longer!  I guess the key is to not let any one else take them for a test drive.   ::)

UT, your car was STOLEN???  Oh, that's even worse than MY story!  You must have been devastated to know that someone was so brutal to your wonderful car that had so much meaning for you.  That's really awful.  Really awful!  Oh, gosh, that makes me tear up a bit.

My husband took a pic of the damage in case the insurance company wants it for their records.  The owner of the shop strongly advised him not to show it to me.  I think that sight would burn itself into my memory,  and I don't think that would be particularly helpful.
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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
Charlie B53
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« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2019, 05:53:49 AM »



I tend to keep 'things'.  Once paid off I think it far cheaper to take care of them than to replace them.

I drove my 1981 Datsum 4 X 4 for 25 years, only replacing it because the body and bed were rusted so badly they were about to fall off in large pieces.  I've had my replacement, an S10 ZR2 doe 14 years already.

In 1973 when I returned from Germany while still in the Army I bought a 70 SS 396 El Camino taking over payments from a HighSchool Friend.  That car is still in my Barn.  I finally found another 4 speed transmission last year, when the weather warms  I just have to get busy and put it in.  It had some dents and dings, needs body work, interior and paint, and will be worth a substantial number as a 70 BBC 4 speed El Camino is quiet in demand.

Parked next That I had since new.  That is worth a bit now as well.

Like I said, everything has been paid for long ago.  I don't think I will ever buy another new vehicle, they are all so over-priced it is ridiculous.  I am seriously thinking about looking for a different pick-up truck.  Something mid-60'd or ever a LOT older.  I'll put in a BBC, 4 or 5 speed, transfer case and 4 X4.  I'll make sure that no one will be able to find another like it, anywhere.   And that will be paid for as well.  I've no intention of paying any Bank interest, except what I still owe on the house.

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Riki
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« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2019, 04:46:56 PM »

Riki, that's a nice story about your grandfather's F-150.  Does your brother have any plans for it?

I'm not sure what plans he has for it.  I'm not sure what kind of shape it's in these days.  It's been sitting for so long, there may not be much that can be done with it.

My dad has a 2006ish Mustang that winters indoors.  I have a feeling that will be passed down when the time comes.
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lulu836
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« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2019, 04:00:38 AM »

lulu836, OMG, you had a STROKE while driving your van?  Here I am just blathering away about a lump of metal while YOU had a STROKE!  That's the stuff of vehicular nightmares.

Very strange thing to happen.  I never knew that strokes are noisy  :o  Sort of like rolling thunder.

As for the car being characterized as a "lump of metal" I think everyone is entitled to have their current crisis noticed.  No crisis is small.
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MooseMom
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« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2019, 12:08:26 PM »

lulu836, OMG, you had a STROKE while driving your van?  Here I am just blathering away about a lump of metal while YOU had a STROKE!  That's the stuff of vehicular nightmares.

Very strange thing to happen.  I never knew that strokes are noisy  :o  Sort of like rolling thunder.

As for the car being characterized as a "lump of metal" I think everyone is entitled to have their current crisis noticed.  No crisis is small.

It never for a single moment occurred to me that "strokes are noisy".  That's fascinating in a horrible sort of way.

Thank you very much for acknowledging my "crisis".   :cuddle;  I appreciate that, I really do.  I have decided to view it all as me giving permission for my lovely, wonderful car to be an organ donor.  Someone who needs it can use the engine (very well maintained and loved) and other bits and bobs for their own car.

We now have a 2007 Toyota Corolla that looks like a box.  I had to be patient and wait until a name for it came to me.  All cars with automatic transmission are female because you don't have to stroke their gear shifts to get them to perform ( :P), and since she's just sort of generic (actual roll down windows!  Even my 1992 station wagon has power windows!), her name is Genny.

The garage knows very well that my dad's car meant a lot to me; they are the only garage that I allowed to touch that car.  It has really annoyed me that they didn't apologize personally TO ME!  I know that accidents happen, and it was just very bad luck with a huge bag of negligence thrown in, but a personal apology would have been nice.  Apparently my husband hinted STRONGLY that such a gesture would be much appreciated, so they later informed him that they've sent me a card.  I'll believe it when I see it.
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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
Charlie B53
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« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2019, 04:52:50 AM »


All cars with automatic transmission are female because you don't have to stroke their gear shifts to get them to perform ( :P


I may have to Print this so that I can Frame it and hang it on my Wall!
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