Click, click, click, click – vroom! That is the sound I would hear as I turned on my mom’s 2005 Chrysler Town and Country minivan. Yes, this was not the coolest ride around, but it got the job done. The car had a lot of problems with it; the gas pedal would stick, the transmission was going, it got bad gas mileage, it was rusted around the edges, and it would make this deep gurgle sound when you were driving. I had been driving this car since I was 16, it was my first car, and it had seen better days. I wanted to drive a car that got more than eight to twelve miles per gallon and that I loved.
When I graduated high school, my mom told me that I needed to get a car before I went to college, and I just looked at her and said, “Mom, I already have one.” Of course my mother gave me a long explanation about how that car was not really “my car” so I did not really have a car. I thought she was just going to let me go either way, so I just did what I wanted all summer, and one of the things I did not do was save up for a car. When the time came to go to school, I did not attend and instead took a year off to save up for a car.
I work at a restaurant in Westborough called Tavolino; it is an Italian restaurant. I worked throughout the year, doing doubles just about every day to save up for this car. I had to deal with the cute old ladies who wanted just a cup of soup, and the cranky 30 year old women who complained if the dressing on the side of their salad leaked onto their salad while I brought it over. There were the rare days when I would have five or six tables that were just nice and appreciative of me waiting on them, but those days were scarce, so I enjoyed them when they came. I was so determined, at this point, to get a car, I was done with the constant doubles, and I was done with not going to school. I did not understand how people did it!
In May of 2015, I had finally saved up enough money so that I could get a nice car that I liked. I only liked Volkswagen Beetles. They were my favorite car. From the years 2000 – 2010, they were made perfectly. The cute circular shape, the flower holder next to the driver’s wheel, how the front of the car looked like a face that was smiling at you--everything about these cars was beautiful, and I needed to drive one. I had always loved convertibles and how your hair would look effortlessly perfect flowing through the wind, so I wanted one, but I would not have been upset if I didn’t get one. What I could not have was a 2011 beetle or newer; they look like hats, and it made me so furious that Volkswagen would do such a thing to Beetles! They were out of the question!
I started my search, slowly, but I started. The first one I looked at was a yellow 2005 Beetle. It was a faded yellow, not a convertible, but it was cute in its own quirky way. I got inside the car and immediately did not want to drive it around. The flower holder was taken out because whoever drove the car before didn’t like the flower holder. When the woman told me that, I asked, “How could someone not like the flower holder? That is one of the best parts!” She laughed and just agreed. From that point, I knew this was going to be a hard search for a car.
It was July when I finally found the perfect bug. It was a 2009 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible with only 91,000 miles, metallic powder blue, with a leather interior and a black top. It was beautiful. When I test drove it, I knew I had to have this car, but I had to have my dad, who is a mechanic, look at it to make sure it was running as well as it looked. I called him up, so excited to have him test drive this car. He said, “Calm down Desiree, you don’t want to seem too excited,” but I couldn’t help it. I knew this car would be the one I would buy.
I picked him up the next day; it was a beautiful day to test drive a convertible, not too hot, very sunny, and a slight breeze would go by that would feel so nice at a stop light. I got to his house, gave him a hug, and he saw it: my tattoo. I had been hiding my tattoo of two huge butterflies on my back for over a year because he told me to never get one, but I went behind his back and got one anyway.
He started yelling, “Desiree, all I have asked you to do is never get a tattoo and you get one, what were you thinking? What did your mother say?”
“I don’t know, Dad,” I said while my eyes started to tear up. “I just thought it was pretty and I wanted it.”
He got in my car and did not say a single word to me until we got to the dealership. He drove the car and found every little thing wrong, but it was nothing major, which meant I was going to buy it. I dropped him off and he just looked at me and said, “I’m just so disappointed in you, Desiree” and left. It was a bittersweet day. It was sad because my dad was so disappointed in me; he didn’t even want to say good-bye. However, I was happy because I finally found a car
A week later, I picked up the car. I drove everywhere I could. I filled up the gas tank that morning, and later on that night. It was the best feeling driving that car all day, then filling up the whole tank for only $25.00, compared to my old minivan which was $65.00. The next morning I made the car even better than it already was by putting on the eyelashes I ordered for her. Once the eyelashes went on, I looked at my new car and I knew what her name was: Alexis. Alexis was great; she was fast, fun, and adorable. I loved going places with her that day, and watching people comment on her eyelashes. I went to work after putting the eyelashes on, so everyone could see how cute she was. The next day I went to the beach, and a little girl that was about five or six came up to me as I got out of my car with the biggest smile on her face and said, “I love your car!” I was loving all the attention.
It had been four days since I picked up my car, and I had to go to work at 4:30. I got into my car and started on my usual path, but I couldn’t exactly go that way. It was August 4th, the day Worcester County had the tornado watch, and Berlin was a mess. Trees were down, powerlines were down, and branches were all over the road, so I drove with caution. I got up to the intersection of Route 20 and Bartlett Street in Northborough. Then I waited my turn to go straight through the intersection. The power was out, so everyone was taking this intersection as a four way stop. When it was finally my turn, I looked both ways, and slowly started going through the intersection. I was about ¾ of the way through when bam! My car moved 15 feet over, glass shattered across my dashboard, my airbags went off, and I heard the worst high pitch noise I had ever heard in my life. I looked up and realized what had just happened and lost it. My four day old car was ruined.
I get out of the car shaking; my neck hurt, and my shoulder felt like it had been kicked by a kangaroo. I looked over to see what had happened and a large, ugly cardboard-colored Honda SUV slammed into my poor Alexis. I looked over at him, crying and furious at what had just happened, and asked him if he was okay. He then looked at me and said, “I had nowhere else to go” and then just went on the phone. People who saw the accident happened came out and helped me because I was a mess. I called my mom, and she eventually came to the scene of the accident. When she arrived they were towing my car. Poor Alexis could not move, she was still in drive because when I got hit I didn’t even think of putting her in park. My mom asked the police officer what the other guy said happened, and he told the police officer he didn’t notice the light was out and just slammed into me going 40 miles per hour, while I was going 7. After owning my dream car for 4 days, I was back to square one, having to look at new cars again.
At first I was hopeful that the insurance company would tell me that Alexis was not totaled and that the damage was not that bad, but who was I kidding? He hit my rear left quarter, then moved his way up to the front left quarter. My tire was sideways and the whole passenger side was smashed inwards to the point where his car was where my passenger seat was. A week later I got the call from the insurance company to start looking for a new car because Alexis was totaled. The collision did $10,000 worth of damage to her, and it was not worth fixing. I was upset, but I started looking right away because, as my mom said, I needed a car for school. I was looking at a lot of cars, about 4 a day, but nothing was making me as happy as Alexis did.
I was driving home from looking at a car with my mom when I spotted a yellow VW Beetle. It was a newer model, but I thought it was so pretty I had to test drive it. I test drove it, and fell in love all over again. It was a bright yellow 2013 Volkswagen Beetle with 7,000 miles. It was like buying a new car! I had to have her, and in two weeks, she was officially mine. I didn’t get to drive her all I wanted to the first day because she was a standard and I didn’t know how to drive one, but I eventually learned, and now I could not be happier with this car! She will soon be just as perfect as Alexis was when the eyelashes I ordered her come in.