Kara and I picked up a new car yesterday and took in a whiff of that unmistakable new car smell. Nothing like it.
Going to the dealer brought back many memories of my childhood. I used to love going to the lot with my parents to pick out a new car. My folks were Ford people when I was growing up and remember sitting in Mustangs, Torinos, LTDs and Country Squires. My parents had a strange thing for green in the 1970s. They had four green cars in a row: a Fairlane, two Torinos and a Mustang identical to this one.
Anyway, so Kara and I brought Helena to the dealership to pick up the new car. She looked at the showroom in amazement as any 3 year old might, and immediately wanted to sit in a red car, that of course was not ours. While we signed the papers, a saleswoman graciously played with Helena, who was having a blast. In a moment of slight alarm, our crafty daughter somehow managed to start a car. We all jumped in a grabbed the key!
The new car means our legendary Roadmaster is semi-retired. It was my daily driver for more than a year and a half and it has been great. Even at 135,000 miles (just barely broken in as any Roadmaster fan will tell you) I love driving it and it has never given me a problem. I will keep it for those occasions when I need to haul something big in the back like plywood, a kiddie pool, or Scot Haney’s broken down Subaru.
We ended up getting a new Buick Regal. I can tell you the 2011 models are a complete 360 from the Regals of yore that featured tufted velour seating and the turning radius of a boat. The style conscious, tech savvy, gizmo and gadgetphile Mark Dixon gave it his stamp of approval in the Channel 3 parking lot, so I guess that means Kara and I are trendsetters.
The new Regals are a totally different animal now and we are fortunate to have one of the first in the United States. It drives better than the BMWs we once owned and was much cheaper. Kara picked out the color, after all I’m just the husband. The folks at the very kid-friendly Parsons Buick in Plainville were very helpful especially John Bekish…a former local radio guy whose authoritative voice is a dead giveaway of his background.
We’ll enjoy that new car smell as long as we can. When you have kids dropping food and so forth it can disappear pretty quickly!
I remember the first car I learned to drive was a Buick Century. It was during the time when Kojack was on T.V. and it happened to be the same color, so the car ended up being named Kojack.
He happened to be a ‘handme down’ from my mother who wasn’t too happy to give it to me. Well, I actually had to pay my dad for the car. I was never lucky to get a new car, being the youngest, I always got the handme downs. I have to admit, though, I miss my Kojack.
Good luck with the new car Kara! Also make sure that Helena has her driver’s license the next time she is in the driver’s seat 🙂
Congratulations on your new car, and good luck with it! 🙂
My mother also has a Roadmaster (a ’93), and she will never get rid of hers either. (because it is the largest/roomiest car in the family, we all affectionately call it the “roadmonster”) My Dad has offered mom a new car on many occasions, but she refuses. Aside from loving her Roadmaster and being very attached to it, she also hangs on to it b/c it is my dog’s (her grand-doggie’s) favorite car. He is a large dog, and he appreciates the nice roomy back area..so he can sprawl out and look out the window. About 2 years ago, my parents had the Roadmaster re-painted..it’s original navy blue color..so it’s still looking pretty good for it’s age. Like your Roadmaster, hers is also a woodie. It’s great to see that there are other families out there that appreciate their old Roadmasters. It’s nice when I see one on the road every once in a while. We wish they would bring back the Roadmaster!
Several years ago, my aging father needed to replace his broken-down 1995 Ford Taurus. As a WWII vet and a Consumer Reports devotee, he preferred an American car with good reliability ratings. In the realm of used cars under $3,000, Buick Regals and Centuries were the only candidates. I found him a low mileage 1996 sedan, all burgundy with velour interior, quintessentially old-school (and old-guy) all the way.
I inherited that Buick last year when he passed away. I prefer to ride my bike most of the time, but every once in a while I take the Regal out for a day trip or a drive-in movie (bench seats rule!) and I’m rewarded with a smooth, comfortable float down memory lane.
One of the reasons I had missed my Buick Centrury is the bench seats. I think those were always the best kind. I do have to admit that mine weren’t velour though.
I do understand about the feeling of floating down memorial lane. My dad picked out the car I have now. We went to two different car dealerships in NJ, the first one didn’t really want to ‘help’ us look for a car since it was pouring out – you have to understand, my dad at that time was 88 years old walking with a walker, and the sales person looked like he was in his early 20’s, my dad walked out. We went to the second dealer, where four salesmen came up to my dad, called him by his name, looked at me and said ‘this must be your daughter,,, you were right, your grandson looks like her. By the way how is his car doing?’
We left that day with a car for me. Dad though drove the car to his house, while I drove his car – he got to the house before me, meaning he was moving pretty fast for an 88 year old! By the time I got to their house, I got there in time to help him out of the car – he wanted t run into the house to tell my mom what a great deal he got on the car – he talked them down $3,000 from $15,000 to $12,000 for the car.
Dad has been gone now a little over three years, the house is up for sale, yet until it is sold, I will drive there going into the driveway, hearing him rave about the deal he got on the car.