Farewell, Old Friend

Today, I got a new whip. That’s means car, for those of you who aren’t so fly.

Before I can truly celebrate this though, we must mourn the one who is now headed to auction. There, she will either be purchased by some father for his 16- year-old daughter to ruin and not fully appreciate OR where she’ll be bought  *gulp* —- to be chopped up for parts. 😦

The 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse. God bless her little motor oil pumping heart.

I remember when my Dad and I started shopping for cars together my senior year of high school. My parents always had a deal with my brother and I that if we kept an A/B GPA through high school and went on to college, they would buy us a car. One car, and one car only for the rest of our days, so we better take good care of it.

My Dad took me car shopping the last semester of my senior year of high school. I had gotten into UT and fulfilled my end of the bargain. As we headed to Knoxville, I had my heart set on one of those lime green Volkswagen Beetles. True story. Dad strongly encouraged me to shop around. The first thing we drove was the Mitsubishi Eclipse. I think we went there because they were running a great deal with super low APR. I fell in love. Hell, I probably would have fallen in love with anything on four wheels that wasn’t my ’91 Toyota Corolla I was driving at the time. But I like to think it was that little red car’s destiny – that she should shuttle me around for the next 11 years.

The Eclipse was so dang cool. It was the shiniest thing I’d ever seen. And soon, it would be mine. Thanks so much, Mom and Dad. Dad and I signed the paperwork and celebrated by eating dinner at a Mexican restaurant by the movie theater. Obviously.

Two or so days later she was in the garage waiting on me one day after school. And so it began.

Since then, she’s taken me on more road trips than I can remember, braved the parking garages at the University of Tennessee, had more fender benders than I care to remember or discuss and just overall been my number one gal on four wheels.

But she’s 11 years old now, and although she’s served me well and is still purring, it’s time for her to move on to the next phase in her little car life. Now, she’s chock full of door dings, hail damage, scratches, strange smells and several other surprises. Maybe I should have left instructions in the glove-box about how to turn the radio volume up and down. It’s sort of a tedious process.

Ah well.

There were near tearful hugs goodbye.

God speed, little Eclipse. I sure love you lots. The Mazda has big wheels to fill.

Also, August will be the first month that I’ve ever had a car payment in my life (again, thanks Mom and Dad), and I already think it’s pretty sucky.


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