(Disclaimer: This is about my car. If you aren’t into cars you may want to skip this post. It’s also a work in progress.)
I knew it would be painful when the time came to let you go – partly because I figured we would go out together in a fiery crash as the wheels came off or catastrophic engine failure occurred on the highway. You know we were headed in that direction. I was going to drive you until the end of time (mine or yours) and I tried, just as you did. I think you tried harder, and you were a better car than I ever deserved.
You brought me from North to South, where mechanics would marvel at your road salt-corroded undercarriage. There was that brief custody battle where I learned what “title holding state” meant, and experienced both the horror of vehicle property tax and joy of no state inspection. The southern heat tried to break you but only succeeded in breaking a few door handles over time. The important parts were indestructible.
Together for 21 years; that’s a long time for any relationship. You were my most important possession. My safe place. My escape route when I felt I needed one. My freedom when I felt trapped. I’m sorry we never made it across the country like I wanted to, but we saw oceans and highways and mountains and swamps and Mardi Gras and Disney World and Canada. We were in a parade. We were in a funeral procession. I covered you with blooming Rustoleum vines and you managed to keep your dignity while making everyone smile who saw you. You have always been my joy. You will be the car I drive in heaven.
Make no mistake – you have not been replaced. Everyone knows you and will miss you. People will see me get out of a nondescript black car now and ask where you are, and no matter when, it will still be too soon.