Facing up to buying another car and its hard.
I masquerade as a fairly practical person - but really I am a "creative" and crunching real numbers and making budgets gives me a head-ache.
When I was in high school we had a class called "Family Living" that was all about husbands and wives working together, budgets, talking things out - you know ways to have a reasonably functional family. Unfortunately my family was very dysfunctional which blocked my understanding of the class content quite a bit. I remember the cute blondes and serious others who made notes, brought in their hypothetical budgets and really loved the class.
I wished then - and now - that I was one of them.
In our marriage Jim was the practical money-manager and he often wished I had been one of them too.
But never you mind - life has a way of catching up with you and offering new chances to get those wishes.
Since Jim died I have had a continual nagging hear-ache - money and how to manage it. I am great at spending it - its the budgeting and managing that comes hard.
So here comes a BIG pain and test - buying a car.
What do I need?
What do I want?
What can I pay for - - - and how to pay?
First off - I am not buying a new car on a whim - the guy at the garage refuses to fix my 12 year old van because it is now and will continue to eat more and more money. Emotionally I am furious with this whipper snapper - ofcourse - but my rational side knows he has stepped up and done me a favor.
I hope he will also give me a bottle of Tylenol to go with the HEADACHE.
One of my primary needs is SAFETY. To me that means sitting high up off the road and having lots of metal around me.
To start, since my van has been banned from the road, I rented a Chrysler Town and County van because its on the recommended list. When the guy from Enterprise drove up I tried not to laugh - this rental is shiny black and looks like a cross between a hearse and a Secret Service van like the ones that trail after the President's car when he speeds through Washington, DC traffic.
Its comfortable, lots of room, sits high up off the road, and the ride is smooth - its a TRUCK. Someone told me that Toyota Sienna's - which I have driven for 12 years are built on a car body - while American auto makers built their vans on a truck body. I believe it.
The real extra on this Van - is that I can start a shuttle business and pay it off.
And, I love all the toys it has - things that were not even thought of a decade ago when we bought our Toyota - a back-up camera, navigation screens, hand free blue tooth telephone, Sirius radio with a whole channel devoted to 1950s music - all great! But - costly.
I tackled the Toyota dealer yesterday starting with new cars. The salesman was not high pressure so this morning I am going to drive a variety of Toyota vehicles.
I feel another headache coming on.
PS: 10 PM that evening.
After lots of agonizing, telephone confabs with my sister in Georgia and great help from my daughter Karen and - - - a handfull of Tylenol - - I bought a car.
It sits high off the road. Surrounds me with lots of metal and - it is filled with intriguing toys.
I bought a "fully loaded" 2010 Toyota Sienna Limited Van - in pristine condition that seemed to
be made - - and waiting - - for me.
There is a story for later.