So I have a car for two weeks, one of those “Hey, if you give us a ride to and from the airport, you can have the car while we’re on vacation” horse trades with my folks. It’s my old car, actually, the Matrix I bought six months before I moved to DC, a move which therefore necessitated selling it.
To my Dad, actually, who was in the market for a car, and liked mine. He said it was because of the storage capacity, but I think it’s because he wanted a manual transmission.
It’s weird getting back a car that used to be yours. I look at the wear on it, and I think, “Dad, what have you been doing with my car?” But it’s been his for nearly three years, six times longer than it was mine.
And I do miss it, sometimes. It’s been a nice treat, heading out of my apartment in the morning and going to the alley behind my building to the car instead of walking a couple of blocks to the Metro station. Instead of catching a bus to work, I find parking in the neighborhood near my office complex and walk five minutes.
And I have been driving it as much as possible. Because, hey, it’s a car! And Reno Road NW is pretty damn empty at 6am so driving is still fun! (Except this morning where I apparently left my brain on “auto-think” and drove right past the turn for 34th Street to Wisconsin).
My reading is falling behind. Reading on the Metro is totally acceptable. So, for that matter, is napping. Neither is cool while driving.
Driving has its perks: for one thing, I’ve sharpened my parallel parking skills. For another thing, I bought 320lbs of cat litter last week. This should be enough to keep me stocked – and the cats happy – until sometime in early 2012 (although I am considering buying another 160lbs this coming weekend).
On the other hand, there’s nothing that makes me more grateful for my pedestrian life style (both literally and figuratively, if you must know) than fighting traffic back into DC in the afternoons and hunting for parking. Fortunately, I’ve got a visitor’s parking permit to keep me free of tickets and citations, and also fortunately, my budget is free of car insurance and city registration.