06 April 2007

Shopping For A Mini-Van

We're currently driving a modified 2000 Olds Silhouette mini-van. It's out of the extended warranty now and it's getting a little old, even though it has less than 60,000 mi on it. The modification computer developed some problems and we had to disconnect the power door. Then the microswitch on the ramp quit working and now it doesn't extend unless dragged out by hand. In addition, the modification systems were drawing a lot of electricity and running down the battery. We hadn't noticed that when it was being driven to work at least three time a week but we sure did notice it after we retired.

So we've been looking around for a new mini-van. We won't actually buy the van; the folks doing the modification do that. They're actually dealers for a wide variety of vehicles. Anyway, we decide what we want, consult with them about the mods, leave a deposit, and wait for them to drop the new mini-van off. They'll even take the old one as a trade-in. If it weren't that it needed work on the mods, we'd probably try to sell it ourselves.

So, anyway, there are three possibilities, Honda, Toyota, and I forget (hey, we're just starting). At the southern end of our development, right on I-10 at Washington, we have an auto mall with both Honda and Toyota dealerships. So I dragged my husband off to look at Hondas. We got a very accommodating salesman who brought the exact model (fortunately in the wrong color) we were considering around and let us sit in it and play with the gadgets. It even had a sunroof, which nearly clinched the sale.

It had really slipped my mind how nice a new car is. I was ready to take that baby home right then, without even looking at the other two possibilities. Fortunately, I'd known I'd feel this way and I was prepared for it, so all we left with was some literature.

Not yet being totally reconciled to a lifetime of driving a mini-van, I also got some S2000 literature. I wouldn't let the salesman bring one of those around to look at because I know exactly how weak my willpower can be. Besides, I'm still thinking red Mustang convertible, have been in high school when the Mustang was introduced (we had a '64½ Mustang convertible for years and years, until we got the Olds Cutlass convertible in '92). Notice, however, that there's no mention at all of visiting a Ford dealer. I know better than that.

Next week it's the Toyota dealership. I need to do a little research on the Web, so I'll know what to expect. I'm pretty sure their mini-van will be just as nice as is the Honda.

I need to go set the pork chops and steaks out on the counter to warm up for dinner. I'm going to grill like crazy this afternoon. I got about ten of those thick boneless center-cut pork chops and four New York steaks. I'll grill them all and then freeze most of them. Then when I don't want to heat the house up on a miserably hot night I can just thaw out a package and nuke something potato-y. I might marinate some of the chops, now that I think about it.

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