Chevette Shade


            Our totaled 2006 Ford Taurus arose (reincarnated may be a better word) in a white 1995 Nissan Altima. 

            Come to think of it, it's really the ghost of my mother's old Chevy Chevette.  That car took a beating hauling food, people and even furniture.  Like Mom's brown Chevy, our new but very used Altima jiggles and clunks with its rust-worn doors and spunky little motor.  As it bucks into gear, I realize I've become my mother.  Neither of us like driving.  Memories of nasty break downs on the side of the road would make any technically challenged old gal panic driving a vehicle with mysterious mechanical issues. 

            So far so good, though.  The only disabilities are: broken gas gauge (I don't own a cell phone, so hubby is bracing for a call from an unknown number with my voice pleading for gas), sunroof doesn't retract (doesn't leak though, bonus!); the overhead light rattles if I remove the tattered cardboard air freshener that's wedged into it; wing of visor actually flaps when in use; if turning the key while in park doesn't turn over the car, putting the control in neutral will.  And like us grandmas, the smell an old car gives off makes one glad all the windows work.

            To keep this mobile ghost friendly, on its rearview mirror I hung the same wooden cross that swung in front of me during the accident.  I'm still debating removing the air freshener wedge and replacing it with a cross I made from palm given out last Sunday at church.  I added a trusty umbrella to the back seat, an Aldi quarter to the side compartment and shopping bags to the trunk.  Since all cars look alike to me except for their size and color, I wrapped a bright orange pipe cleaner around the Nissan's antenna to save time finding it in a parking lot glowing with small white cars.

            I'm trying not to be super religious or superstitious in my blessing of the auto.  But, not taking any chances, my first trip was to church.  The accelerating rev and loud idling were hymns of comfort, as Mom's Chevette had sung similar tunes. 

            Memories of sitting in the passenger's seat with Mom at the wheel are nostalgic with a feeling of safety.  In spite of her stress, she typically appeared confident.  Not me.  My kids were the best behaved travelers.  They knew any distraction could easily frazzle me and send us all to the hospital instead of Grandma's house.  Today I gladly sit in their passenger's seats but still create tension.

            Mom continues to laments the loss of her car.  "My Chevette was a good little car," she's incline to say when the subject of autos comes up.  I hope history continues to repeat itself in her car's 1995 ghost.         









  1. Go granny, go granny, go granny go. It's the little old lady from Maple Shade.

  2. Good luck with the car. I remember in the movie "Oh, God You Devil" one of the characters asked God (George Burns) if praying would help him. "It wouldn't hurt," Burns replied. I think the same philosophy applies to motor vehicles.

  3. Thanks, Kevin. I just got it inspected this morning. I held my breath, hoping it would pass. It did. Didn't even have to pray.


to top