Did you all see yesterday’s picture of the day? I am so excited! I have finally got the old Volvo 240 wagon that I have been wanting for years!
Oh sure, being part of the Silicon Valley SUV driving club has been fun – especially as we are so not that type – I don’t wear velour sweatsuits and drive one-handed while talking on my blinged-out cell phone held in a hand tipped by 1-inch nails which are only slighly less fake than the unnaturally firm and ample chest which is bulging out of a spandex sport shirt cut at once both too low and too high.
But I’d been longing for an old Volvo wagon for years. They are much more to my scale (I being rather petite), and to my general gestalt. I’m a hippy from way back. I’d rather wear tie-dye than a tie, I’d rather be in jeans or a flowing gauzy skirt than a suit (although I used to cut quite the figure in court in a mini-skirt suit ..and then there was the black leather mini with The Boots ™.. but I digress).
And practically speaking I’d been wanting an old Volvo wagon because they are sturdy as tanks, go forever, and you can haul a lot of stuff in ’em.
Anyways, when we realized that driving the Explorer was contributing to the length of time it was taking my back to heal, as the size and seat were all wrong for me, I moved this dream from the back to the front burner, and started looking in earnest for my “old Volvo wagon”.
I knew just what I wanted – a late 80s (but a ’90 would be ok) Volvo 240 DL wagon. And so that is on what I focused my search. I’d actually been looking on and off for about 2 years, just not quite so seriously. In fact, I’d gone to see two Volvos during that time, and test driven one. But in all the ads I’d seen, the look-sees I’d done, none of them were “it”.
I hadn’t really looked in a few months when I turned up the heat last week and added the Craigslist “volvo 240 wagon” search to my RSS feed (geek!)
And then, there she was. I knew from the moment that I read the Craigslist posting that she was the one.
1990 240 DL wagon
5 speed manual transmission
single owner, lovingly maintained
Reluctantly being sold because she had been made extraneous by children growing up and moving away, and the inheritance of a smaller, but equally nostalgic car.
She was everything I’d wanted and hoped for in an old Volvo wagon.
I was sure that she must already be gone – surely someone would have staked a claim in the day or so that the post was up before I saw it. And indeed, someone had staked a claim.
But as luck would have it, that someone’s teenaged daughter, for whom he intended to buy her, refused to learn to drive a stick.
My teenaged daughter learned to drive on a stick.
And has in later years thanked me for it.
Any right-thinking person knows that sticks are much better for any number of reasons.
And much more fun to drive.
And so, thanks to kismet, fate, luck, the alignment of the planets, and teenage stubborness, she’s mine, mine, all mine. Muwahahahaah.
We took her out for our first family drive yesterday.
And it was good.
Oh sure, the SUV has a lot of fond memories. Many many.
My husband proposed to me from the backseat of that SUV.
We spent a great deal of our courtship driving in that SUV, with our Brady Bunch family of 3 dogs in the back, driving to Big Sur, Pismo, Carmel and the likes.
We spent the first night on our new land in that SUV. (It was also the last night we spent on that land, but that’s another story.)
My husband sped me to the hospital while I was in very hard painful labour in that SUV. Hitting every single goddamned bump at 80 mph along the way.
Our son has known no other car. In fact, until yesterday he had ridden in a car other than that SUV exactly three times in his entire life, and that’s including a cab ride.
But still, it was time. If only for the sake of my back.
And I adore my new old Volvo.
Now she needs a name.
Actually a nickname, because I promised the original owner that we would keep her given name – “Eschrichtius robustus” – which is the scientific name for the California grey whale. They called her “Scritchy”.
I’m not so sure about the “Scritchy” part, so we are casting about for a new nickname for our “Eschrichtius robustus”. Grey whales are baleen whales, also known as “Mysticeti”.
So we’re accepting suggestions for nicknames for her. Something female, something related – maybe something slightly Swedish.
I’m sure that something will suggest itself.
In the meantime, we’re having fun driving her.
In case you missed it, here she is: