With 6 busy kids, that includes 2 older teens and a 20 YO, demands on our vehicles is high. My 20 YO is a car's worst enemy...'course, it's not his fault! . My Mom's generous offer of her '97 Metro for college wheels in August of 2006 lasted about a month when the swing arm broke away from the frame due to some unnoticed corrosion...."not his fault" (really! ). He was lucky to be at slow speed when it gave way. $75 to tow it.
In October I purchased a terrific '99 Lumina to suppliment our 15 passenger "mini-bus", and we let junior drive our aging '97 Sunfire to and from college. It was burning a little anti-freeze/coolant (not a good sign), but was running ok... we'd just add more antifreeze every week or so. In February Junior forgets to add coolant and overheats the car (and keeps driving!), and does some serious motor damage...."not his fault". About this time he also drops out of school, so I'm in no hurry to sink $1500 into a car with a $140K miles on it for a kid who's "trying to find himself" ...we end up dragging him to and from a temporary job so he can save and get his own car. 3 months of this go by and he's saved nearly ...drum roll please ....$500 including $317 from his tax return! @!%&* ...I was about to show him why I played middle linebacker, but his mom intervened, so at least he didn't get hurt! ("russin, frussin, fritzen, fratzen...")
On March 17th (my birthday), Junior #1 drives Junior #2 to play practice so my wife can take me to breakfast...yippee! (nice kid! ) Cell phone rings at 9:17a.m. as we're pulling into the diner.... I hear, "I'm so sorry Mom...". He spun in snow on the expressway and snapped the rear axle off along with alot of other damage... totalled.... . At this point, I'm hungry and upset, but grateful that both boys were ok. Two week old new tires on this car, and it was terrific in snow....but he spins while 2,186 other cars make it thorugh unscathed..."not his fault". I get a new 2007 Hyundai along with a big fat payment book for my BD!
Fast forward to September 2007. Found a $500 '91 Mercury w/80K miles to tide us over until my brother finishes the motor work on the Sunfire...runs like a top, gives us a bit of "transportation insurance", and gets better than 1 mile/gal. ...After several months of demotivation and procrastination, followed by some more procrastination by my brother (runs in the family), two rental cars, two new front tires, recharging the AC, and changing the oil in all 4 vehicles this week, the darn Sunfire fails inspection for front brakes yesterday! (and junior's broke of course!) . I'm so tired of car troubles! ...Ace Woodworker to the rescue... . Got the brakes torn apart on one side before bed last night, up at daybreak, brakes finished up by 8am, inspection sticker and breakfast by 10am.
There's no real point to this rant, but God knows we need to get a few months of quality use out of this fleet of 4 vehicles this year! PLEEEAASE! So what are you doing this weekend?