My longest relationship just ended.
It’s the one I had with my car.
We first hooked up in 1998 when I was planning a move from New York to Los Angeles and my father generously handed down his 1992 Volvo 240. There was only one problem: I didn’t know how to drive.
A decade before, when I was an inexperienced and distracted teenager with a license to ill, I totaled not one but two cars, which was traumatic enough to put me off driving, at least while I lived in a city with public transpo. Now I was in trouble.
As I planned my road trip 3000 miles west, two of my best friends from college came to my rescue. They agreed not only to accompany me but also to teach me the finer points of defensive driving and freeway merging at speeds of 75mph on I-80.
Somehow we lived to tell the tale, though I was pulled over once in Moab, Utah for “driving down the middle of the road.” I blamed the exceptional scenery and was given a warning. It is exceptional.
Over the next several years, as I battled LA traffic, LA freeways and LA texters, I put my trust in the Volvo – safe as a tank – and gradually became a pretty good driver.
And that Volvo got so damn old it almost became cool. It was my signature—the single girl in the retro mom car. And then one day I wasn’t single anymore. And then I was mom. And it was like destiny.
There’s no car I could have trusted more to bring our baby home from the hospital. And it served us faithfully and well, weathering baby vomit, pounds of spilled Cheerios and cheddar bunnies, and the occasional patter of tiny feet.
But at some point, the upkeep got a little crazy on the old gal, and Dave (6 foot 2) got tired of hitting his head when he buckled Viv into her car seat. Like every other family in America, we started to dream about SUV’s.
We found a gently pre-owned Toyota Rav4 that is roomy enough for family trips and even for the family addition we hope for — not that we’re counting our eggs before they’re hatched.
And we sold the Volvo to a guy who genuinely seems to love it. He didn’t even roll his eyes when we asked him to take this photo.
If you’re wondering why I look like I just rolled out of bed, it’s because I did. The very day we sold the car, I had my eggs harvested for our second round of IVF. It’s been a productive, and hopefully reproductive, week to say the least.