Safety

I love my old car. She’s 12 and I bought her eight years ago and have put nearly 19,000 miles on her. That includes driving cross-country twice and long drives in Texas between our place and his folks’. Our insurance company marvels that unless I have to drive to the airport or the vet, I only put 1-2 miles on the car every day.

About six months ago I received several recall notices that were quite disturbing. Let’s see, first, the ignition might go out and the car might die in traffic. That’s a problem. Then once I’m rear-ended by the idiot behind me (we live in a highly rude traffic area) the air bag will not work. Scary. And then, there was also a seat belt recall. So, my car dies, I get hit, and neither the air bags nor the seat belts will function. Let’s get these problems taken care of.

Needless to say, I’ve kept my jaunts on local roads in the neighborhood. I called in immediately upon receiving three recalls, there was a fourth that was less significant. They made an appointment a week later. Then two weeks after that. Apparently there was a run on air bags so it took six months for those parts.

My husband and I drove to the only dealership in the area, about 45 minutes away from where we live downtown. We got a loaner car, cute but my husband doesn’t fit it, with only 100 miles on it. It still had that new car smell, plus loads of extras and push-button start. We ran into a friend in our underground garage and he said “New car!” Not really.

The dealership treated us well and yes, I’ve a card from a salesman who wants to upgrade me to the newest model. I told him I’ll be back in a few years. I’ve a SUV, 2003, that drove off a lot in Texas (no snow or salt on the roads) for three years, then to the owner of a dealership in another Texas city for a year who used it personally. I’ve a record of every car wash, oil change, work done over her entire life in the glove box.

I swear that her record is at least as fat as our dog’s medical file and both are many times thicker than mine. Aside from the calcium deposits from our garage (that will be paid for by those responsible) she looks nearly new.

Gorgeous leather seats, and the back holds precious cargo. Car, go! Woof says dog Zoe who has a cargo net, 4″ thick orthopedic bed and her water bowl and leash in back. She loves the road and only pops her head up on off-ramps, stop lights, near home or near my husband’s family ranch.

I feel so much safer tonight knowing my ignition, seat belts and air bags will work properly. She’s a good car and only has 120K miles. Oh, lest I forget, the recalls were paid for by the manufacturer. We were good samaritans and topped off the gas tank of the loaner so today cost us $5.88. Now when’s the last time you went to a car dealer and spent that little! Cheers, Dee

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