Where Did the Thrill Go?

Car shopping loses its appeal.

If you are 18 and buying your first car, be excited.  If you are 23 or so and buying your first new-ish or brand new car, be excited.  Embrace it.  Enjoy it.  It doesn’t come around every time.

My gosh, that is a mature thing to say.  What happened to my youth???

There comes a time when you’re shopping for a car, when you don’t care about the newest crap or the shiniest crap or the fastest crap.  Or the cheapest crap.  You want the familiar crap.  The same old junk you loved before.  I’ll let you wonder, until I make my final decision, what the “same old junk” is for me.  Clue…does the photo help you?  Only if you really know your cars!  (I definitely do not, in case you’re hearing that as an “I’m better than you” statement.  It’s more of an “I’m not going to tell you yet, but you can figure it out if you really know me or if you really know what various dash gauges look like!”)

My two pieces of learning, car-wise, from the past few years are these.  One, you get what you pay for.  Two, it doesn’t matter what you pay, it’s going to cost you the same.  These might sound contradictory, but they are not.  One is about the stuff you get.  Two is the money you pay.  One means, if you pay low price, you get low quality.  Unless you are very lucky, and I don’t think I’ll count on that.  Two means, if you pay low price, you end up paying for repairs, so it’s all the same.  Trust me.  The same, for me, within a hundred bucks or so over the course of a year and a half.  Not considering the fact that it’s not paid off yet.  So, financially, I had the better deal with the newer car.  Interesting.  Lesson: You might as well buy nicer-than-junk and not get stranded on the side of the road, or have to live without your car for a week while they figure out what it is, or what have you.

Maybe I’m just burned out on car repairs.  Rephrasing…I’m definitely burned out on car repairs!  I’m just done.  With this car, with this “deal” that turned out not to be so much of a deal.  Transportation is an expense.  Do you want to save money on transportation?  Too bad.  You can’t.  Live closer to your job.  Don’t go on vacation.  That’s all I’ve got, because every other variable just turns out the same.

The decision I’m leaning toward has lots of crap I don’t need.  Push-button start, which sort of weirds me out right now.  Some sort of automatic-variable transmission I don’t totally understand the purpose of.  A pretty fantastic driving experience.  It’s these things that shine brightly and distract from the real reasons I want this car…Great gas mileage.  Reliability.  Safety.  A good car for the long-haul.  The best price for how much car you get, not even considering the shiny distractions.  And the one that’s going to sell me…It even smells like the “same old junk I loved before!”  (And I test-drove several different cars yesterday…)

You probably have your opinion.  Keep it.  Or tell me, I don’t mind.  I will make the best choice I can with the information I have at this moment.  But the only information that truly means much to me is the information I gained from experience.  With every car, the information grows.  Hopefully, whatever car I decide on this time will last me for a looong time.  But, as always, you can’t predict these things.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mom
    Aug 06, 2008 @ 13:25:50

    Good luck. I pray it all works out for you!
    Love, Mom


  2. Betty
    Aug 06, 2008 @ 18:35:35

    I HAAAAAATE car shopping. I also hate car payments, car repairs, dirty cars…ok so about all I do like about cars is I don’t have to go out and feed and water it daily, and I don’t have to get a shovel and pick up its pooo–I also like that it gets me where I need to go, keeps me warm in winter, cool in summer and can haul the things I need to haul—I truly empathize with your car headaches. Best wishes as you shop and decide what “road” to take. Unfortunately they all have a few potholes:(


  3. Becky
    Aug 06, 2008 @ 22:07:39

    I think I know what car you’re thinking. 🙂 Or maybe, I don’t, but I’m pretty sure I do!

    Have you had your conversation yet? Maybe the new car can be the real treat for having the conversation. 😉 hehe. {What? Sometimes all it takes is a little bribing, motivation, incentive, what have you.}

    Good luck with your decision!


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