I have been making fun of Sean's car since approximately 46 seconds after he first picked me up in it. It wasn't horrible. It wasn't falling apart. It was paid for. But it also looked they way a child of four draws a car: a box, with wheels.
And over the years, we've laughed about how his car kind of suited him, the way mine suits me. I drive a Beetle (I'm on my 3rd Beetle since I met Sean 5 years ago, in fact). My car is fun, cute, curvy, and full of zip. I like to think it says something about me. It's not super practical. It's a two door with nearly no trunk. It's also a convertible, though this fact is irrelevant for 9 Canadian months out of 12. I love it to pieces.
Sean's car is more like Sean himself. It's big and comfortable and practical in every sense. He got a good deal on his Nissan Altima, paid it off quickly, and has driven it reliably for 8 years. But it's gray. And boxy. And what I would call "nondescript" meaning sometimes when I'm waiting for Sean to pick me up, I accidentally get into other, similar cars.
I get it. A car's a car. If it gets you from A to B, then who cares, right?
I think I used to believe that, but that was before.
Before I used to have a significant commute, for one thing.
And before I used to own a car, or even a driver's licence, which is probably telling.
Now that I have all of those things, I realize a car is not just a car.
It's a place where I'll be spending lots of time. There are some days I spend more time with Ruby (my car) than with Sean, or my dogs. So it needs to be comfortable. But it also needs to be something I feel proud about driving - this has helped turn a dreaded commute into something more enjoyable. I like driving my car. I like being able to scoot in and out of spots before other drivers can even get their signals on. I feel safe in her. I love how quickly she warms up in the winter, and I love how summer drives in to work can be repurposed into time in the sunshine. I love matching my lipstick to my car, letting my hair tangle in the wind, turning the volume up to 11 and taking a slightly longer route so I can drive by the water and feel the spray on my skin.
And I wanted the same for Sean. Not the exact same, maybe, but I wanted him to drive something worthy. And fun. And sexy, goddamnit. No more nondescript.
Because that's not my Sean. Yes, he's changed. And maybe some of that's because of me. But I think he's learned that there's more to life than being practical. We deserve to treat ourselves!
So I finally got him into a new car. A lovely new car. Which means his old one, which, defying family tradition, he did not drive literally into the ground, or have it gasp its last breath just as it chugs into the scrap yard, was up for grabs.
There are a couple of good options for donating your old vehicle. You've probably heard of Kidney Car - they will come to your home, tow away your car, and leave you with a tax receipt and a warm fuzzy feeling knowing that proceeds go directly to the Kidney Foundation of Canada, helping to fund research for kidney disease and bring awareness to organ donation.
Another good option is your local fire department. Fire department trainees use your old car to practice using the jaws of life. I had a serious car accident a couple of years ago, and I had to be cut out of my car. It's kind of a nice feeling to be able to give back to that - obviously, you hope you'll never need those services, but just in case, isn't it good to know they're prepared?