All Things Old are New Again

When I envisioned myself getting a new car eventually, I was thinking that I’d be getting a small car.  The top two contenders were the Ford Fiesta and the Honda Fit.  In fact, I had already picked out (in my mind) a lime green Ford Fiesta with special decals on the sides which are available as an additional option through Ford.  It was going to be a black city skyline and I thought I might add a black bat or two in the sky above the skyscrapers.  My only criteria when thinking of a new car was that it would be sporty and it would be roomy enough for my spinning wheel to fit inside.  I CERTAINLY never thought I’d be in the market for a minivan again.

We drove our share of minivans when the kids were growing up.  They were great for hauling kids and pets and luggage around the country.  But those days were behind us.  It was just the Commander now and myself.  At least that is what we were thinking.  Somehow we overlooked the fact that, with two little grandchildren, we now had to be able to haul four adults and two children in carseats or else take two cars everywhere if we wanted to go someplace with all of us.

And that’s how I find myself the slightly bemused owner of a new Toyota Sienna van that holds 8 passengers.  It has just about every bell and whistle you’d want.  In fact, I was joking with my book club group that I felt like I had to go to flight school just to learn how to operate the thing.  The other day I was driving over to the bookstore at night, in the rain, when I realized that I didn’t have my lights on (my son had inadvertently taken them off of the “automatic” setting) and that I had no clue how to get the lights on.  I had to pull into someone’s driveway while I fiddled with the controls until lights appeared.  The next challenge was trying to get the windshield wipers going correctly.  As I rolled into the parking lot, my back wipers were going, my front ones were going, I had a red triangle glowing on my dash which was alarming me because I had no idea what it meant, and I wasn’t too sure that I knew how to turn off my seat, which was heating my buns.  God forbid if someone should call me because my hubby hadn’t told me how to answer the phone on my steering wheel.  And forget about getting gas!  I didn’t know where the gas cap release was.

It sure is slick, though, as a people mover.  We’re driving around in luxury with the little ones in their carseats and plenty of room in the back cargo area for groceries and other goodies.  I’m slowly getting the hang of how to open the sliding side doors, although it is still iffy whether or not I’ll get the correct door to slide open on the first try.  I’ll eventually get it.  The hardest part is trying to figure out where my front end is and how far back the rear extends.  This car is a lot bigger than my little Vibe.  For now, I’m going for the pull-through parking spaces to play it safe.  Who would have thought that I’d be back amongst the mini-van crowd at my age?  It’s worth it, though, for little Sweet Pea and little Spud.

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