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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

New Car Continued

This is Steven Petrick posting.

Today I had the sad task of cleaning out my old car. Removing the sticker from the left front windshield that must be turned into the apartment complex's parking control office, but I cannot get one for the new car until the tags arrive.

For the final time I have cleaned out the glove box and the trunk, removed cassette tapes from the cassette tape rack, and emptied the ashtray (just books of stamps in there since I do not smoke).

The stuff in the trunk was mostly "emergency" material (my air pump to blow up a tire, wrenches, flashlights, coveralls, sleeping bag, etc.) and has all now been moved to the new car.

Were I serving on the Titanic (or any doomed ship for that matter, assuming I was on the bridge and knew the ship was doomed), my last act would be to move the engine telegraph to "finished with engines" before I left. So it is with my old Honda.

I have closed out its final log book, noting the date and miles when it died, and simply that the car is now dead. I have given one key to the dealership in case they need to move it (cannot have the steering lock, which would happen without a key in the ignition), but have retained the "daily use" key (the one I used almost every day, which is obvious by how worn it is) as a keepsake with the log book. Silly, I know, but the 1987 Honda Accord LXi has been a part of my life since I bought it in 1987, and it is hard to let it go. As I have noted before, were I to win the lottery even now, I would pay to have it rebuilt rather than let it go, but that is not an option.

The people at the dealership know me (I have been a steady customer since early 1990, have always talked to them and treated them as people, and became fixed in their minds when, very early in the relationship, I came to see them to complain that a bill for services was too low (yes, too LOW). I am too honest not to pay for work that was done. Pete was getting ready to have an argument with me because at first he thought that I was complaining about being over-billed, and was surprised when I explained that the bill did not include a service that the car was supposed to receive. A check showed the work had been done. I got along very well with them from that point on over the years, the car would not have lasted as long as it did without their extra effort and input.

Well . . . now I am back to square one. The new dealership does not know me [and truth be told I would like to take the new car to the old (Honda) dealership to maintain that relationship], and I do not know them. So far, however, they do seem to be doing alright by me.