As I have said too many times…I love my van. Functionally it’s the perfect vehicle for our family. I got the van back when the kids were much younger. So when Ferris was playing both soccer and baseball as a lad – he would use the van (with its back tinted windows) as his personal locker/changing room. Running off the soccer field into the van – quick uniform change and a cool drink from the cooler and then up the hill to the ball field.
When our daughter was a teen, she could listen to her music through headphone hookups in the back seat, while her mom and I could chat quietly up front. Both kids learned to drive in the van (this is especially notable …since they are 8 years apart).
The windows have decals from most of the universities our daughter attended, and left over stickers from our Pop Warner days.
I still have an unused cellular antenna on the van… remember those? The first phone we had in the van required the cigarette lighter for power. It was mobile…but you needed a briefcase to carry it.
My van has captain’s chairs in the second row. One of those chairs has sat in the garage all these years, because it makes a perfect spot for a big dog to sit.
If I take out both middle chairs and slide the bench seat forward – I can fit sheetrock flat in the back. I have done that more times than I care to remember.
I can’t even count how many times my spontaneous wife and I were out shopping and bought furniture, or an appliance or a gas grille, a shrub or some other hard to transport item…and just popped it into the back of the van. Everything always fit.
It’s the ultimate vacation car. Pull out the middle seats; cram the back with beach paraphernalia and you can still fit 4 comfortably.
And let’s not forget its most recent fun trip, taking our kids to the DMB concert this summer.
My van is 13 years old, and has …well we don’t really know the mileage since the odometer stopped working a couple years ago…lets just guess about 160,000.
To look at her you would never know it. She looks good for an old girl.
But …as to be expected – her health is beginning to fail. Oh sure…there were signs. First the door locks started locking …at odd times… kinda like Alzheimer’s. The back wiper stopped working… could be arthritic. Lights on the dash here and there work intermittently. There’s more rattles and squeaks than there used to be.
Well, the old girl broke her axel the other night. Ferris was driving when it happened. Luckily he was just pulling out of a parking lot – and handled the situation like an old pro.
I spoke with the mechanic yesterday, they tell me there may be other problems … possibly the transmission; there is also something with the front suspension. We won’t know for sure …until they can get in there and fix the axel. So we wait. Pacing. Nervous. Not sure how it will turn out. It may be the old girls time. But I am not giving up on her yet. (Ferris would be rolling his eyes now…).
Then again… there is the cutest little blue Cabrio at the used car dealership in town.