Friday, November 20, 2009

Blue car blues


When I bought my Volvo 240 wagon with 165,000 miles on it about 11 years ago, the guys at the local Volvo repair shop said "It'll go to 300,000 if you take care of it."

We'll the car is now at 297,000 miles and I think it would be a not fully accurate to say that "I've taken care of it", but I have invested a lot along the way and the car has been a good friend in return. This car has seen me, and us, through many miles and many adventures, from solo trips with my little sailboat in tow to Welfleet on the Cape, to romantic camping accommodations with my future wife, to escape-the-city trips out of Boston, to doubling as a can-do utility vehicle with hay bales on the roof and excessive amounts of timber weighting down the lot.

Its a truly great car, and if I were the king of car manufacturers, I'd decree that the Volvo 240 should be built and made available in perpetuity, with the one qualification that it aim for better gas mileage. They stopped making the 240 in 1993. A sad passing.

If all this sounds like an obituary, it might be, but then again it might not. For the last three weeks the car has been sitting in our yard, parked askew with a flat tire. For months, the shifting has been a bit rough, and reverse was getting progressively harder to engage, particularly for Nancy. One morning, Nance was having trouble getting it into reverse and I strutted out and thought I'd get it in gear as I always seem to have been able to. Well, this time was different. I couldn't get it. I tried and tried, even going forward onto the lawn a bit to see if that loosened things up--to no avail. Since we couldn't get it in reverse, we would need to tow the car backwards if we wanted to get it out the driveway.

So we left it there. In the meantime, the rear right tire went flat and we just got used to it.

Today, finally, Joe and I towed it back enough that we could point the bow up the driveway and park the car out of the way. Now we can go somewhere if we need to, as long as there is no backing up required. The tire is still an issue. The next move is to get it to a garage and see if maybe, just maybe, this car is worth getting to 300,000.

1 comment:

Annadeene said...

Go go big blue- you carried me on many snowy and exciting "get me out of Boston" adventures too. Only 3000 miles to go!