November 17th, 2003

short and red

I told you something was wrong with the car.

Dear Mom and Dad,

See, I knew something was wrong with the car. I spend lots of time in my car, I can tell when things are even a little bit off. I can tell how much gas is in the tank, even though the gauge doesn't work. Trust me when I say "something is wrong with my car." Especially when I say it multiple times. Maybe we should have had it checked out on Thursday when I first noticed it, and you said everything looked fine?

Now we know something is wrong with the car. How do we know this? Well, today's first clue was the smell of burning oil. The second clue was the cloud of blue smoke behind me. And when I called to mention that, your advice was to keep driving until I got home, and you'd get out to look at it tonight.

The third and most undeniable clue was when my car stopped dead in a lane of traffic when I was trying to get off the freeway. Oh, and how much fun that was, turning on the hazard lights and hoping no one hit the car with me in it while they came around that curve at 50 mph. And then I got to get out of the car and wonder, gee, if the car gets hit, is it going to come sliding toward me, standing here on the side of the offramp? And then I got to spend some quality time on the phone with the nice cranky lady at AAA, who kept trying to tell me that I don't have a membership, when I am quite sure that I do. Once we got that straightened out, I went on a ride with the friendly tow-truck driver. We talked about dogs. He has a Border Collie / Rottweiler cross. Isn't that neat?

The ride back from the dealership, after I filled out paperwork and tried to give my information to the surly lady at the service desk, was fun too. I tried to be friendly and explain to the cantankerous shuttle driver how to get to my house, and he politely informed me that he'd been driving around Moreno Valley since before I was born, and he knew the area like the back of his hand. I took the hint and remained quiet until he dropped me off at my front gate.

And now I sit here, unsure of the future of my lovely little green car. I know I put too many miles on it, but my commute is unavoidable. I really wanted to get a few more years out of her, without having to replace all her parts. I'm not too sure how I'm going to get to work tonight, though I'm pretty confident that I will be able to get a truck from one of you when i get down there.

And if my beautiful little frog car is dead, well, I've put some thought into this, and for Christmas, I want a white Chrysler LeBaron. You wouldn't understand why, but I have my reasons.

Your loving daughter,
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