So, as many of you no doubt recall our car died. Well, it didn't exactly die. The engine still worked and it would start up and run and everything electrical would spring to life at our command, it's just that the drivers side wheel bearings are shot. And that is a dealer serviceable only part. Also due to our car being, “one of dem foreign cars” there wasn't a dealership within a two hour drive of my house.
The advice of the dealer was to remove the entire wheel bearing assembly, bring it in, have them fix/replace it and then take the new and improved part back and reattach it to the car. Either that or we could have it towed the two hours or so.
Needless to say that wasn't about to happen.
So we parked it at the top of the driveway, wrote 500$ or best offer on the windshield on it in soap and hopped into our 84 Chevy Truck to go car shopping. After of course we wrestled three separate eye drops into the cats eyeballs because life can never be you know, boring.
So the first place we stopped was the crazy chop shop used car lot that is located in town. Our first mistake was telling them the price range we were looking for. Our second mistake was entering the damn lot in the first place. It wasn't so much the cars, but the lady in charge of selling us shit was seriously creeping me out. First off she was like, meth skinny. Also it looked like at one point in her youth she had used too much tanning solution. Plus, she had this weird habit of taking all her jewelry off and snapping it back on while she was talking to us. So she would be telling us about this wonderful super not put back together after some horrible accident, nope never, car, while her watch would be going, snap, snap, snap. And about how they had just gotten in a little silver car that would be just perfect for us as the little metal beads on her bracelet would be going clink, clink, clink. Overall it was a lot like talking to a mummy someone had unearthed in the desert sands somewhere and taught the fine art of retail to.
The second place we stopped at had nothing under 6000$. Which when you are poor is like, a million fucking dollars. That guy seemed all right, except he had a big long list with all the prices, because putting the price on the car itself is apparently too damn hard. He was trying to sell us on a Chevy Cobalt but I nixed that one in the bud when I opened the trunk and saw the battery was in there with the
No I am not shitting you. The battery was in the fucking trunk.
Oh but it was totally okay because he assured us “you can still jump the car from the front.” Great. Wonderful. Motherfuckers. It's not like it would be totally inconvenient for me to take all my shit out of the trunk every time I need to disconnect the battery to work on the car. Like ha ha, that would not be shit balls stupid at all.
So at this point we hopped back in the truck, picked a direction and drove in it.
We ended up washing up at a Chevy dealership. We got out of our dingy beat up pickup and walked past all the shiny new cars to the doors. Inside the lobby we were greeted by a very friendly pregnant lady. She asked what we were looking for. Scott started in on the litany, used good gas mileage, not too many miles, but at this point I was sick of it all so I was like just show me something old.
She was like, how old?
I was like, older then 2005.
She told me they had two things. Then she explained that the reason no one else in this entire fucking area would sell old cars was because they couldn't finance them so they shipped them off to a wholesaler. Then I was all like wow it's like this entire society is set up to try to lure me into being in debt. Which is totally fucked up. If by fucked up I secretly mean horrifying and terrible.
Luckily she had two things. A tore up mostly dead Oldsmobile, and a 1999 Toyota Avalon. We poked the Avalon. We looked under the hood. I laid across the seats and took a flashlight to under the dash. Two things became apparent. One it would need some minor work, a tail light was cracked, and the check engine light was on, but over all it looked pretty good.
We asked about price. We made it clear we could fix it ourselves and that they didn't need to do much to it. She quoted us a price. It was below 5000$. Which when you are poor is like winning the car lottery.
We made plans to come back, hook up our neato vehicle code reader to it after they had addressed a few issues and made it pass a WV state inspection.
To make a long story short, we went to work, came home from work at 3am, got up drove to the bank, drove to the dealership, gave the car one final inspection and bought it.
Because fuck you financing.
It still needs some work, as in replacing the oxygen sensors and a motor mount, and new tires, but overall it's a great old car and I feel pretty good about all this. It's also a Platinum Luxury Car. Which in 1999 speak means there is a CD player in the trunk.
Ha ha retro.
I think I am a hipster now.
A car hipster.