Sunday, May 8, 2011

Car Hunting

     A while ago I mentioned on my blog that we had given up our leased car and were determined to live on one car, George's Toyota pick-up truck, almost as old as he is. The darn truck was a wonderful thing. It carted much furniture, bargains from flea markets and and household items more than I care to think about. And we lived with it for another 8 months or so, before finally deciding that we needed a new car.

     We didn't have too many requirements. It had to be economical on gas, within our price range, have a back seat for when we take my mother-in-law out, and had to be cute.

     We had looked endlessly at cars driving by, commenting on each one. "That one's cute!" I would say as one whizzed by us. "Um!" George would comment, leaving me to wonder if it was a positive or a negative grunt. We eliminated electric cars because of the expense.

     There were only 2 cars that made it to the "Cute" Category. One was a SMART car, which we had gotten familiar with in Illinois. My sister and her husband have a cute little red and black one  George had driven. back seat. Still, the SMART car lingered on in our hearts. Could we attach a little side car for George's mom? Or get 2 of them and hitch them together for trips to restaurants, etc.

     The other "Cute" car was the Mini Cooper which we had been looking at for ages. More and more of them were showing up on the streets and we each took turns pointing them out as we passed them. "Look, George, a mini!" We did not think they were within our price range though. We decided to look at them but were preparing ourselves for eventual disappointment.

     The day before Mother's Day, we had some unexpected free time and decided to start the car shopping process. We would go to 1 or 2 places and look at some of the economical cars they had to offer. Perhaps Honda and Hundai to begin with. But fate intervened. As we were driving down the road, we passed Mini after Mini. Someone or something was pushing us in the direction of the Mini-Cooper showroom.
      "George, we are getting a sign here. Go to the Mini-Cooper dealer. We need to be there today."

     I didn't have to argue with George. He too had recognized the power of the Mini. We started looking at the models, noting that they were indeed higher priced than the other cars that we were considering. I felt deflated. But we looked anyway. We were careful to tell our salesman that this was our first stop and we had not made a decision on the make of the car. He did not seem worried by that information.

     We looked at several really CUTE cars and then we found an ivory colored one that had 3500 miles on it, since it was a test driving model. There was a substantial discount on this car and we decided to test drive it. George drove it. He really liked it. So did I. If only it was a different color, but I was not going to let that bother me. We are not fond of white/off-white cars. We like bold colors. Our last car was pumpkin orange. You could see that sucker in a parking lot a mile away! That was a car.

     I asked our salesman if there were any others with mileage on them. He had one more. He led us all the way to the front of the lot and there was a Mini, a rusty pumpkin color. It was our car! Less miles on it, 1700, it still got the same discount.

Meet Minnie

Minnie's Face always looks happy. We're smiling too.
     George does not rave about things...ever... but he LOVES this car. It has a lot of things on it we don't know how to work so he is researching the book. As for me, I wait for him to show me how to do it. His biggest excitement so far? Driving around town he was getting 31.5 mpg. At the price of gas, that is pretty cool.


Anonymous said...

So cute! Congrats!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Hope all goes well with the car of your choice.


Margo Kelly said...

This is the car my 14-yr-old daughter would like for her first car (in her perfect little dream world where everything is free).

Plain Jane said...

Of all the cute cars you guys go the cutest. I am so jealous!!! We are shopping for a car but my husband wants it to seat seven and still get amazing gas mileage....Is that even possible?