My mom had a Ford Escort – which seemed to be a good little car overall. I don’t remember having had to take it to the mechanic on a regular basis. It did have its little quirks, but nothing major. Not that I’m aware of anyway.
Not that we ever wanted to, but we couldn’t drive over 70. The car would shake and vibrate as if ready to explode. We learned that by accident when on a stretch of highway that seemed to have no traffic. I was often surprised when it didn’t fall apart on us.
When going to get gas, mom wanted someone with her. The small door that closes over the gas cap had to be opened from the car – but it would stick. Having someone push open the door while someone pulled the lever behind the steering wheel made it easier than stretching one’s body while pulling the lever by hand and trying to unstick the door with the foot – or finally asking some stranger for assistance.
Mom would often leave the door open just in case she was ever caught without companionship. Without fail, some “good Samaritan” would come along and push it closed. Mom was annoyed by it – and though I understood why, I seemed somewhat grateful that others felt concerned enough to “look out for us”.
Shortly after I was married, mom sold the car to Roland and me. At that time he was driving a Dodge Caravan and gas was outrageous (or so I thought; 20.00 won’t fill a small car at present; I thought it disgraceful that we were spending that much to fill the Dodge.) I told Roland under no circumstances was he allowed to drive the van unless all five us were in it (seems uncomprehend able that I thought it was such an outrageous sum at the time. Can you imagine filling up a minivan on just 20.00 right now?)
Roland would complain that the Escort windshield was so low to the ground that he couldn’t see anything ahead of him on the road. And then one day he made a U-turn in the middle of our neighborhood street – thrilled with having the ability. He also thought it was great that he could park in spaces where the van wouldn’t fit.
Mom and I took a lot of trips in that car. Though I have a lot of memories of the car, I don’t miss having the car anymore. I do miss my mom quite a bit.
Today we drive the Saturn that she drove. It also has its quirks. The one that drives me up the wall is when the heater/vent/AC unit goes on all by itself. It will do it randomly – long after it’s been driven and just sitting in the driveway or parking lot or wherever – sounding like it’s possessed.
It’s led a good life, but I think it may be time for something new. Something that has more get up and go and doesn’t make me feel like I’m driving in neutral. Funny I’d say that when I don’t even like to drive. Perhaps Oregon will change that.