Our car situation is such that if you aren't up for the challenge of shuffling three cars around between six drivers it might drive you bat shit crazy. *Note: Lad drives his own leased car and Curly is the only kid now who doesn't drive, Reg just got his license two weeks ago even though he turned 16 in January.
I do like a challenge, but (insert image of me pulling my hair out) this summer has been a LOT. Back in the day, all the kids who were caddies would get dropped off at the same place, same early morning time. They'd hope for a loop (golfer). Then they started getting requested and would need to be there at various times. Now, they go in different directions. The events of last week almost pushed me over the edge.
All three of our cars needed work done. Brakes for gray (kids' car), tire patch for red minivan, and the 12 seater, great white (GW) Chevy van needed a ton of work. Initially we planned to replace GW. We couldn't find a reasonably priced replacement. Even with Lad working at the dealership, we had no inside trader tips. We bit the bullet and did what one does in '22 - fix it. We hope that after spending the $4,500 on this '04 gem that has like 150k miles on it, it'll hold up long enough so that we still feel good about that choice.
A typical 'night-before' conversation goes like this: "What are you doing Tank? (he works three different jobs depending on weather, etc.). If you work commercial landscaping gig, then what if dad drops you off and when you are done, you walk back to his work (less than 6 blocks) and take his car? Then I have a car to drive Reg and Curly back and forth to basketball camp, and I can drive Ed to the train - or are you doing zoom in the basement again? Then Mini can drive the caddies in the gray car. We need the caddies to be home by 4:00 so we have two cars to get the basketball players to their games. Wait, two babysitting kids will be here for a few hours in the morning, this is the LAST time they need help this summer - so who will be home with them when I drive to basketball camp? Then when I go to book club at 7:30 pm, someone has to remember to pick up Daddy from work at 8:20 pm."
I asked my dad if I could borrow his Buick Rendezvous for a bit, because two cars was not gonna cut it for us while one car was in the shop. He's 82 and he doesn't drive very often. I promised him that only Coach or I would drive it. As complicated as this made things, imagine the above night-before plotting but with the 'Coach must drive dad's car' restriction, I figured that was the only way we could borrow from him.
Lad's dealership wouldn't fix GW, but they'd send it off to a place that they use for such jobs.
On Wednesday two weeks ago, I drove GW to the dealership and Mini followed me in the red minivan. When we got to the dealership, I got in to drive the red minivan home with Mini as my passenger.
|I took this photo while driving the white|
(which still has a few car seats in there)
and that's Mini in the red behind me.
Get off my butt.
Me: MINI, YOU WERE FOLLOWING ME WAY TOO CLOSE.
Mini: WELL, I DON'T USUALLY FOLLOW SO CLOSE, BUT I WAS AFRAID I WAS GONNA LOSE YOU AND I REALLY DIDN'T KNOW WHERE I WAS GOING.
Me: FOR REAL? I'M THE ONE IN THE BIG ASS WHITE VAN. EVEN IF A CAR GOT BETWEEN US, YOU WEREN'T GONNA LOSE ME.
Mini went to hang out at a friend's pool later that day. In order for her to get there, I drove in dad's car with the two girls. Mini hopped out and took the minivan from Coach's work, because she couldn't drive dad's car. Curly and I drove to our pool.
The car place, we found out AFTER we dropped the van off, couldn't fit GW in until Friday. Groan. Coach comes home early on Wednesdays, so when I went to pick him up because Mini had the minivan, I told him that we should just take the gray car over and swap it with GW. We needed a car to get fixed while we had dad's car borrowed.
He and Reg drove off in the gray, to do the swap. I was at home when Mini called, sobbing. She'd been in a car accident. She rear-ended someone. No one was hurt. The air bags went off and the red minivan . . . well, RIP. That car was not going to pass the emissions test come July, so it was going to need to be replaced anyway. Still, so scary.
Mini's lower leg (even though
it looks like a shoulder)
- while she had it bent on
a stool. This was about a week later
when it was almost healed.
Did I just say that she followed too close? How great that I stuck to my guns, refusing to let anyone else drive dad's car? Phew. Now we were down to two cars, and one of them was dad's. Gray in shop for brakes, white needing to go in for an overhaul.
Time to buy a car.