Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sayonara Subaru

The mechanic's grim face said it all. My Subaru Forester, my companion in fieldwork, high adventure, and Seattle traffic, is not long for this world. Not without an engine transplant at least, and I am too cheap for this. My feelings ranged from disbelief ("is this a con?") disillusionment ("after all that we've been through!"), dismay ("what more financially can go wrong during this adoption"), and disgust ("one of the most reliable cars my ___"). Looking back, I had had warning signs (the belch of black smoke when I started it up in the mornings, for example) but I had been in denial. After all this was a car built to last. Heck, I figured I had five to ten more years left in that baby--what's a little smoke? But in the end, destiny found me and it was a silver blue Toyota Sienna with a stereo worthy of my Stevie Wonder anthology. I had contemplated that one day, perhaps in another half decade, I would look into a minivan. But I'm taking it as a sign that the new car, which seats eight, was destined to be part of my more immediate future. All along I felt that the Forester, while great for carting around a seventy pound dog and then an equally messy baby, didn't offer enough space for sundry friends, groceries, school bags etc. I would glance covetously at passing minivans thinking that somehow the people driving them were more prepared for all of life's adventures with kids. They had more airbags, more cup-holders... more distance between the driver and fussing passengers. Now I feel ready, like a ball player with a newer, better mitt that means the difference between glory and riding the bench. I dare to wonder whether another babe might be out on the horizon, circling, needing to land in a safe place-- like my plush third row seats. I imagine God lobbing a child, a pop fly, way up into right field and I'm there with my mitt, with my eye on the ball as it gets larger and larger, realizing all I need to do is get under it and I can make the catch. Some of you may scoff, some of you may shake your head in doubt or wonder. But in years to come, you will know the answer before the question. Yes, my dream of another child does come out of right field.

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