Monday my ex-MIL told me she wanted her car back (the one I’d been borrowing since August). Wednesday I went to the credit union and then started car shopping. After a shitload of research and visits to a few car dealers, I wound up getting a 2009 Honda CR-V EX, white, with 92K miles on it. I picked it up yesterday, and I’ve already (and accidentally) dubbed it the Nerdmobile because I’ve ordered some nerdy decals and things for it (like 20-sided fuzzy dice and an Avengers-related license plate frame). It will also have cello and knitting decals.
I read somewhere that if you stick your decals to blank sheets of window cling vinyl and then cut them out, you can have removable, reusable decals to swap out at will. So I have some of that coming in. I am terrible at applying stickers of any kind to any surface, so this way I won’t have to worry about them being at weird angles and me unable to fix them. Also, I am the sort of person who thinks a particular decal or bumper sticker sounds like a really good idea but hates it two weeks later. So easily removable is best.
Today my sister and I took ex-MIL’s car back to her. She’s 1.5 hours away from my town, mostly on an interstate, so the NM and I got to have our first road trip together. It was fantastic. NM is comfortable as anything, has an impressive enough pickup that you’d never guess she’s a 4-cylinder, and has outlets in the center console for both 12V power and an aux cable for the stereo. I put a USB charger in and twist-tied the USB and aux cables together, and now I can listen to my phone over the stereo speakers without having wires in the way. The sound system is excellent for music, and it worked pretty well for a phone call too. She has very little road noise, too, even doing 75MPH down the interstate. I was impressed.
So the drive down was spent listening to podcasts: My Dad Wrote a Porno (which is hilarious) and Sawbones. Sis drives faster than me, and we agreed to meet at a parking lot outside of XMIL’s neighborhood. Sis stopped at Starbucks as we left our town, and much to my amusement came up behind me as I was driving into XMIL’s town. So we went to a gas station instead, so XMIL’s car wouldn’t be empty when we gave it back to her, then went to her house.
I had asked XMIL and my ex to have a few things ready for me to take home with me. I put those things in the car and found that they took up less than a quarter of the cargo space. So XMIL and Sis chatted while I went upstairs and collected more stuff. Ex followed me around, talking to me and finding things she thought I might want to take with me. All in all I fit a floor lamp, two large three-drawer craft storage bins, two medium ones, one small one, three big boxes, a small fire safe, a bag of knitting, some clothes… and still had a little room left. And didn’t pile things on top of things, so my rear view wasn’t even slightly obstructed. I was amazed at the amount of cargo space in the NM once the back seats were folded away. I love my car.
As Sis and I left town, it hit me that I didn’t owe anyone there anything any more. The only reason I need to go back to that county is to finalize the divorce, and I still have a few things there that I want to get at some point. I don’t owe them anything now. I plan on keeping in touch with XMIL, but I’m not in her debt anymore. Freeing. The drive back home was great. It’s been many, many years since I enjoyed road trips; now I want to kidnap Sis and just go… somewhere. Anywhere. And my mom and I used to travel some together, for long weekends; maybe we can go somewhere too. The NM is excellent for road trips. I wasn’t expecting that.
I’m not thrilled about having monthly car payments for five years. It’s a bit frightening, actually, to commit to that. But I need a car, and it makes me feel more independent to have my own. Two years ago I decided that I needed to have good credit in my name, in case anything ever happened to my spouse and I needed to be able to manage for myself. At the time it had been so long since I’d owned or rented anything in my name that I had no credit anymore. So I did a “credit builder” loan at a credit union, got a secured credit card through them, and did a good job of paying things promptly. I’m so glad I did, because now I have a halfway decent credit score. Mom had to co-sign for me, because I don’t have much income, but this will help my credit too. (Mom co-signed for a car for Sis during Sis’ divorce. Family tradition, now?)
So anyway, that’s the story about the Nerdmobile. I’ll take pictures of her after I get my decals and things put on. My only problem with her is that she’s white. Someday I’d like to get her repainted. But I love her to pieces. A friend was the one who recommended the CR-V to me. After I got mine and ordered decals, She told me hers is also white and also has fannish decals on it, although her fandoms are different than mine. So we match now, much to my amusement. Next time she’s in town I want photos of the two cars together!