Though we had no intentions of buying a car before the tree across the street smashed our trusty truck, I’ll have to admit I’m enjoying the good vibrations from my brand-new Chevy Cruze from Russell Chevrolet in Sherwood.
It’s a smooth little ride that we bought yesterday; the only vibrations are from the sweet Pioneer sound system, which rattles the back on bass-heavy songs.
After we closed in on the Cruze as the car we wanted, we went there with a figure in mind (low) – and color (red) and miles per gallon needed and a few other must-haves – and salesman Darryl Stearle made it happen.
John said he knew when he met Darryl that he wanted to buy a car from him. Instant trust and instant connections are nice, especially in something as potentially nerve-wracking as buying a car.
This was easy.
I knew I wanted very high gas mileage. And something sporty, with a good sound system and phone-syncing capabilities. Oh, and red. We decided it would be really nice to buy an American car, especially since the “auto bailout” has worked so well and made American cars forces to be reckoned with once again, instead of the mediocre to lemonish vehicles they’d become in the recent past.
And once I saw how cute Cruzes are, I couldn’t stop thinking about them.
So there you have it. And now I have it.
Buying this car also made me think back to my very first car that Daddy bought me when I was 17. It was not an American car and it was rather a lemon, as it turned out, but I loved it at first.
A brand-new 1973 Toyota Corolla, brown. We dubbed it “The Raisin” after the size and shape and the fact that small boxes of Sunmaid Raisins were my go-to snack in high school.
I remember perfectly that it cost $2,484 and Daddy wrote a check for it. It equaled one month of his upper-middle class pay at the time. Ah that cars still cost one-month’s pay. (Mine was an automatic, which made it cost more than the advertised price for the 5-speed. A whole $41 upcharge.)
My father tricked me, though, and acted like he had to think about it and was leaning toward no, so I was shocked to come home from school one day to find it sitting in the middle of our front yard at 6324 Blackhawk Road. Talk about excited!
I ran it ragged in a little over a year then took over Daddy’s 1971 yellow Super Beetle when he got a company car. I adored the VW and wish I’d kept it – drove it with two car seats in the back after my babies were born before breaking down and selling it. Daddy gave me his red ’76 Mustang, which I drove with three car seats in the back when I had Cathy’s son, Robert, in tow as well as my two.
Poor Cathy got stuck with The Raisin as her first car, which turned into almost a death-machine that would stall out in the middle of the intersection near our house, putting her at risk of getting creamed on her way to school.
Back to the Chevy. Let me add that cars have changed since we bought our Jeep Liberty (also red, but candy-appleish) in 2006. Now I have to download some apps to sync with my car and learn how to use all the cool computer technology that came with it. Driving is easier these days, but the modern conveniences have a learning curve of their own.
One comforting retro thing I’ve noticed, though, is the turn signal sound. It’s a nice, rich, full-bodied thunk, unlike the quick flittery signal of so many cars today. Reminds me of childhood and waking up to the sound of the turn signal, which meant we were almost home.
Now I’m ready to do see the USA in our Chevrolet. With about 40 freeway mpg, why not?