Sunday, 30 April 2017

Breaking a very old habit

I have reached a point in my life where, well, "enough is enough."

Throughout my driving life, it's mostly been worn out, second hand vehicles with some having pretty serious and/or expensive issues. I had never been in a position to walk into a dealer and say, "I'll take that one," and leave the lot in something more modern and under a warranty of some kind.

Nope, usually I read a classified ad about a cheap vehicle that has been previously loved/hated/flat out tortured and I get that fantastic idea that it will become my new "ideal" vehicle. Time and again, I go check it out, perhaps drive it around the block, ignore some of the issues it may exhibit and buy it, with grand ideas about fixing the minor problems or more ambitious plans about restoring it.

One such recent example was a 1994 Chrysler LeBaron GTC convertible, the day I bought it, the issues and letting it go

Sometimes, I get lucky, like when I drove my well used 2001 Chevrolet Impala for six years of nearly trouble free motoring. I wrote about my experience with this former police car here: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3.

Now, I am very tired of this way of thinking and doing things. Fantasies of finding a "diamond in the rough" and not only getting a fantastic deal buying it and having it brought back to showroom condition is nothing more than a pipe dream. I don't have a big shop and all the tools, nor time to do the work myself. The big, fluffy bank account to pay somebody else make a dream become a reality, doesn't and will never exist.

So, it's time to come to terms with my age, time available, financial considerations and the stark realization that sometimes dreams are nothing more than frustrations and limitations, disguised as a good deal waiting for me to come along.

Then again, I could be doing it all over, fooled by a new and shiny package.

Friday, 21 April 2017

Stopping in to say Hi

For those of you who have been following this blog and just happened to notice I stopped posting, sorry about that. Starting a few months ago, my automotive passion decided to take an extended vacation and I wandered off to do other things, mostly unrelated to this particular topic, in the real and virtual worlds.

Game titles like, The Crew, Need for Speed World and others have been put on the backburner, mostly due to real world events that have taken place. The only driving/racing game that has seen any decent amount of action has been Real Racing 3. However, there isn't much to tell, other than collecting the Pagani Zonda R during the 4th Anniversary back in February and still progressing my way through the events.

I have pretty much given up making Real Racing 3 gameplay videos, since they don't quite turn out nearly as good as I hoped (I record them Live on my phone, unlike others who use an emulator on a computer). Still, it's my go-to-mobile game, even after all these years.

In the real world, my family said good bye to an old and faithful friend. After nearly 10 years, we came to the conclusion that it was time to let our 2004 Ford Freestar Sport go. Despite falling out of favor with the public in general, our minivan had proven it's worth by moving us from house to house, city to city and all around the countryside. Doctor's visits, shopping excursions, you name it, our reliable chariot through everyday life.

But, that did come at a cost. To fill up at the gas station was over a $100 touch (Canadian of course), tires would be $200 a piece (should something go wrong and not covered by a store warranty) and it's was losing some of it's spirit, racking up 230,000 kilometers (142915 miles for you other folks) on the odometer.

So, while it still had some life left in it, we made the hard choice to put it up for sale. Less than a week later, I watched the new family drive it away and out of sight, hopefully starting new and happy adventures together. Although I didn't get nearly as emotional as other vehicles that have left in the past, I do feel the van's absence on the inside.

As for the 1985 Mercedes-Benz 190E I bought last October, it's still around. However, there have been some not-so-positive findings yet to be disclosed here.