Barbara's Random Thoughts

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

New car and weekend

Yes, Sarah and Elise, I will blog. =)

This weekend I bought a new car. I entered the world of financing and car payments for the very first time. I also entered the world of frustration that is learning to drive stick shift. I know. What was I thinking?! Indeed. I don't think I was.

Last night, Sarah told me I was brave...and as I've said about other big, so-called brave decisions in my life (like moving here)...I think I just didn't think it through. Maybe that's the way I get myself to take risks...I don't think things through. Anyway, I am now the proud owner of a Mazda 6. And it is pretty. And it is most definitely not automatic.

What happened was this: I went car shopping intending to buy a Mazda 3, perhaps a Honda Civic. We looked at the Mazda 3s, and none were quite right--they were all missing features that were important to me, or they had a bunch of features I didn't want and didn't want to pay extra for! While I was considering where to revise my ideas of what I wanted, the sales guy pointed out a very pretty blue Mazda 6. Given the offered $6000 in cash back incentives and rebates, it was going to end up being cheaper than any of the Mazda 3s I was considering. And it was definitely more car. Hmm. However, it had a manual transmission. Hmmm. We test-drove it. And by "test-drove", I mean: my dad and my brother-in-law test-drove it. Because, of course, I've never learned to drive stick shift.

So. I filed this info away in my brain and we headed to a Honda dealer to check out the Civic. I test drove the model of Civic I wanted, and wasn't really excited about it. We looked at the was going to be more than the Mazda 6, by about $2000. For something I wasn't really happy with. I talked about it with my dad and brother-in-law, and came to the conclusion that the only reason I was hesitating on the Mazda was that it's a stick shift. And that's something I can learn (ha!). So I decided to get the car I really wanted.

My dad made me drive to church on Sunday morning, and I only stalled 3 times on the 4-5 mile drive. The last time I stalled it, I was almost all the way into a parking spot at church, so we can count that as "parking" and not "stalling," right? Driving home from church was another matter. There was stalling. There was yelling. There were tears. (All me.) We shall speak of this no more.

Monday morning, we decided it was not a good idea to have me drive all the way home by myself. My dad drove up with me and caught a flight back from San Jose. Yay for senior fares on Southwest. I drove part of the way back...and as soon as I got behind the wheel, we hit stop and go traffic in the middle of the Central valley. I didn't stall once. We're making progress over here. Next step in Project Stick Shift: conquer hills. In the meantime, I'm still driving my old car to work. Sigh. (Good news, Julie: you can still find my house!)

In other news: this weekend, I got to see some good friends I hadn't seen in years. The group of 5 girls I was really close to in choir at Fullerton College--we haven't all been together in maybe 4 or 5 years. I got to Hannah's going away party on Saturday night (she's now in Kazakhstan for the next year), and Corina was just leaving. There was running, there was screaming, there was hugging. I love these girls. Time was short, but it was so good to see them.

I think there was more to say, but now I really must work.
| posted by Barbara | 5:46 PM