Marching On

4:13 PM Elizabeth Seckman 24 Comments


Brand new in 1994

March is winding down. I won't remind everyone how fast time flies; I'm pretty sure we've all heard/lamented it before. But time does fly. My husband bought a "new" car this week to replace his old red girl. If you hear weeping coming from the hills of West Virginia, it may be him. He's had his "girl" for 25 years. She was the first and only new car we ever bought. She's been through a lot in her 400,000 mile run. 

He wanted me go through the family photos and put him together a collage of her before she gets sent off to the salvage yard. I snapped a few with my phone, but they're not good enough. He says we'll do  it better this weekend. Scan them in, maybe make video of her over the years. 

Yeah, he's taking it REALLY hard. 

But as I was going through the pictures, I started to feel his nostalgia. This car has been with us through it all, and now she's sitting idle at the curb. Maybe a video isn't such an insane idea. 




Boy #1, Caleb, not riding shot gun...just sitting shotgun with his dad a second before getting trapped in his car seat. 


She was the family car making plenty of trips on weekends and holidays. Here she is at the zoo. For a skinny girl, she had a roomy trunk. 


During a beach trip, the keys got locked inside. There was a slight moment of panic and some bickering, but clever me quickly came up with the solution- shove a clothes hanger through the window to click open the power locks. My solution is the part of the story I should be remembered for, not that I was the one who left the keys in the car in the first place. 



Pretty soon, there were more boys in the house than she could carry, so she was replaced by a van as the family roadster and became Chad's work car and weekend ride. She clocked plenty of farm/hunting/fishing time. 


She was parked on the street without fear of passing handle bar scratches. And no one cared when the baby tried to "fix" the car like his dad and scratched the driver's side door with a wrench from his play tool set. 


And she logged hours and hours at football practices so sweaty bodies could be hauled home sans showers. 


Last spring, I told Chad she was at the end of her run. He disagreed and stubbornly gave her a new paint job with cans of spray paint, defying me and the rust-odds to keep her road-worthy. He was planning this year's pre-inspection repairs and I had to throw in the towel for him. Her time had come. 

Don't worry. I put them out of their misery fast, like pulling off a band aid. While he was at work, I transferred her plates to a newer old car. 

Time to move on. She was a good car and she served her family well.



Join the Goals Hop

A quick goal update! I planned to read more and write more.


 Word count is down from February. Blame two weeks of spring break! I did get three more books read pushing my year total to 5 books. To my credit, I read East of Eden and Rebecca and neither story is a quick read. I read Rebecca for the IWSG Book Club so I could be part of the group chat on Goodreads. At first, I did this out of solidarity to the IWSG, but once I was done and was involved in the chats...I realized how important it is as a writer to study those classics. Not only are they classic reads, they are packed with learning opportunities for writers. They didn't get classic status by slacking!



24 comments:

  1. Glad you got involved in the chats about the book.
    I had one sports car I didn't want to part with, but otherwise I've never really been attached to a car.
    Go ahead and make a video. It's not just about the car - it's your family.

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    1. You do know my tech limits though, Alex. I could be struggling with the how-to do it for the next 25 years!

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  2. I feel your hubby's pain about the car. I'm still bummed about having to get rid of my little red Pontiac. She was my first new car, too, and I LOVED her. My new car has lots more bells and whistles and all that jazz... but I still miss my ol' gal. She was the only car I ever picked out myself, and it was love at first sight... and first drive.

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    1. I guess I can understand you guys' pain, though I've never really cared about cars as long as they get me from point a to point b and the AC works. After buying that one, I became a fan of gently used. The price tag on used is ridiculous anymore!

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  3. I understand - I cried when I had to turn in my Dodge pickup, a custom order with everything I wanted, to get something better on gas. I loved that truck.

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    1. That would be harder to do. At least I could make a great argument on his car becoming a death trap as motivation to send her off.

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  4. More about your family than the car by the sounds of it, at least for you, maybe not for your husband haha That is a long time to have a car for. Especially with the ones that are built to break these days.

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    1. We did get our money's worth. My husband is amazing at patching things together. I have a stove from the 1950's no appliance repairman can fix, but my husband can.

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  5. I loved those photos and the memories you shared. I get attached to cars too, so can relate to your hubby. Great job on the reading and the writing. We do what we can... I loved Rebecca...

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    1. I imagine Rebecca would be your kind of story. You both have that artistic gift for settings.

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  6. Ah, the nostalgia. I can't remember if I've read East of Eden. I know I saw the movie with James Dean. I've read Rebecca more than once and seen the movie two or three times. I love Rebecca. I've often wanted to change my name to Mrs. Danvers.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. That made me laugh. I can't imagine you ever being hateful like Mrs. Danvers. I could imagine you as a Beatrice. Plain spoken and kind.

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  7. Ok. Honestly. A post about a car that's a zillion years old... what's that all about (is what I thunk, but kindly, right as I'm so not a car guy) and then you totallllllly sucked me in with the first picture and by the end I'm like (honestly again) thinking this is the GREATEST CAR EVER!!

    Any chance it can be retired and maybe used as a plant-potting, landscaping project?

    Pleeeeeeassseee?

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    1. Don't give the man any ideas!

      I'm not a car person either. That's why I never buy new anymore. It's such a waste of money.

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  8. I liked this post, Elizabth. Nostalgic and brought back memories for me.

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  9. Sorry on the loss of the car. Yay for reading books.

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  10. I liked all the photos and memories. I also get too attached at times.

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  11. Awww, your poor husband. I'm sure it will never be the same with a new car, but making a book is a great idea. :)

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  12. I can't believe you got a car to last that long! I have 16- and 14-year old clunkers that are still running, but they are looking baaaaad. Of course, if I had been able to garage them when parked, things might be different. The baking Houston sun is rough.

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  13. Awww. I bet my husband's car will be the same when it finally goes. Too bad we don't have a lot of cool pictures like you do!

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