Goodbye “Lola”, Hello “Rosie”
When we first signed the contract to get our house we knew we would finally have to enter the world of car ownership. Neither of us have ever owned a car, and had been renting Zip cars on a weekly basis to go meet our broker. We knew we could save a lot of money by getting a car before we moved up here, but didn’t want to (or have the money to) buy a new car while we were still living in the city. That is how we met Lola.
After scouring Craigslist for a few weeks looking for station wagons in the “dirt cheap” range we finally found a 1996 Volvo. She came with a name from the old owner “Lola”. She also came with a lot of personality. Unfortunately her personality was often a little whimsical, like opening the sunroof each time you turned on the left turn blinker.
She has turned out to be a great first car, but with over 225,000 miles she is officially junkyard material. She broke down last week (3rd time) and while we paid enough to get her running again, the shop pointed out the brakes pads were worn down to the drums, the ABS was completely shot (which explains the light on the dash), and our exhaust would not pass state inspection. The cost of repairs would be the equivalent of a respectable down-payment so we decided to get a real car.
Enter Rosie. We wanted a pick-up with four wheel drive and a locking rear differential. The last part was hugely important because we got stuck in our driveway 5 times this winter. Lola has 4 wheel drive, but as 4 wheel drive just means that when one of your tires starts to slip, all of the power goes to that tire. What this really means is when you have any icy driveway all you need is for one tire to be on the ice and you are stuck – all the power goes to that wheel and it spins wildly while the others stand frustratingly still. With a locking rear differential, when one wheel starts to slip, the two wheels in the back lock together to pull the car out of the ice. Winters of carrying two shovels and a bag of sand in the car is hopefully behind us.
Unfortunately…Rosie is such a big girl she won’t fit in the garage. On to the next problem.