[Editor’s note: I thought the post was a little boring without pictures, but I didn’t have anything relevant. I dug deep in Flickr to get these, trying to find ones that were recent (2010), interesting, and hadn’t been shared before. Enjoy the randomness.]
I approach new things (situations, experiences, whatever equates with change) as I imagine most people do: a little bit of excitement, a little bit of trepidation. Of course, then, there’s always the “new” that is mostly or wholly undesirable, and that evokes a whole other set of emotions.
Why do I bring this up? This weekend, I think we’re going car shopping. The excitement factor is: I don’t really like my car all that much*. The other part is: I really don’t like car shopping, or thinking about cars, or trying to make decisions. (Quite frankly, I really don’t like driving that much. But that’s not relevant, because I have to drive in order to have a decent quality of life. So, suck it up, Kelly, and move on.)
Here is the extent of my knowledge/opinions/preferences on cars:
- Four doors is a must. I had a two-door car once, and while it worked, it was inconvenient.
- Minivans are bad and I want nothing to do with them. I don’t care how much you love yours. I do not like them, Sam I Am.
- I want to feel like I’m driving a car. This means no ginormous American-sized SUVs. All my life I have driven small cars (Dodge Colt Hatchback, Chevy Corsica, Honda Civic, Daewoo Nubira, Mercury Topaz, and Ford Focus), with the exception of the 6 months that I drove the church van around Michigan.
- Blue and silver cars are pretty. The rest I feel meh about.
- Features are good (like power steering, power windows, a CD player). Unfortunately, the features that I want come with almost every single car I could buy. It doesn’t really narrow the field much.
- I do not drive stick. I do not care to learn. I am quite happy with automatics.
See, not that much. I know that I like the Toyota RAV4 and the Honda CR-V, though I couldn’t exactly tell you why. They seem like the kind of car I want/need? They have good functionality? They look nice? Let me clarify that I think the 2008-2010 models of both of them are ugly and I want nothing to do with that. I would like a boxy car, please.
Also, I have never been in a positive financial situation when approaching the acquisition of a car. Of the cars listed, the only one I “picked out” myself was the Daewoo, and my choices at the time were limited to the 2-door, the 4-door I might be able to afford, and the 4-door I couldn’t afford. I chose the middle option, in silver. The others were purchased for me, picked out for me, or given to me.
I don’t have the slightest idea what I’m supposed to figure out during a test drive, other than “it’s nice” or “yuck.” Is there more? I have already test-driven the RAV4 (last year while in Illinois I borrowed ‘s for an evening). I expect the CR-V to be quite similar.
I fully expect to be frustrated with me at several points during this experience. Let’s just embrace that. This is a big decision and I do not like making big decisions (or medium- or small-sized ones either). I’m quite comfortable narrowing the field down to a handful of options and letting someone else pick. I don’t think that’s how I’m supposed to shop for a car of which I will be the primary driver.
So… there you have it. Now you know what some of our weekend plans are. I really need to do some weeding in the garden (and then I can take pictures of our progress to share), but there’s a lot of rain out there right now. I would also like to make progress on painting the nightstand, but again, rain. Maybe I can start sanding the next project while I wait for the humidity to drop. I also need to finish a book for class (that I started yesterday – short book), write the first draft of a paper (as previously mentioned), clean the house, take my sewing machine in for service, and probably find something slightly more fun to do than everything else on the list. Oh, that’s right. The World Cup is going on. Throw that in the list too – that’s fun. (A whole month of a sporting event that I enjoy? Too bad it’s only once every four years!)
*I have tried to refrain from complaining about it too much because it was free, and a really lovely thing for someone to do, and it seems wrong to complain about something so generous. And it has been a great car, getting me through two moves, and it’s the one to take to Home Depot if you’re getting something big. It is reliable (we’ve only had it in the shop once for an actual repair), which is always good. But let me unequivocally state that “gold” is not a color of car that I desire.