So yesterday was an interesting day. We were awake absurdly early, so made the most of it and got up and out - we left the house at 9am! OK, there was a wardrobe malfunction that meant we had to spend another 10 minutes faffing while I found suitable clothing for the weather that didn't entail a jeans/denim jacket combo, but essentially we were on our way before 9.15.
We spent the whole day looking at cars. I'd found a dealer in the paper who was offering lots of good cars in our price range, so we went down there to check them out. They did indeed have lots of good cars in our price range, so we spent a good two hours or three looking around, getting bonnets up, revving engines, and test-driving before we finally settled on one we liked, and then found the owner to make him an offer.
Two minutes later we walked out the garage. He was just such a dick.
Fortunately, the area was awash with cheap used car garages, so we had plenty more shopping to do. God, we saw so many cars. And such a range of salesmen - from the guy who seems to think you're highly suspicious for wanting to look at his cars, to the guys who are just so good at their job that you find yourself testdriving a tiny bright blue sedan before you remember you're looking for a stationwagon (estate).
We tried a gazillion. None were right. There was black smoke belching, there was radiator leaks, there was funny smells, there was so very many in the wrong price range. We went back to discussing the idea of hiring a car for the trip, when we came to the very last garage on the strip, and the end of our tether. We were both knackered and frankly past it, when we found the car we have now bought...
... it's a red 1990 Mitsubishi Magna automatic - a common as muck large estate car that has room enough in the back with the seats down that we can both lie out (the idea being, you can then sleep in the car). Now that we're away from it it's hard to remember it clearly. Have we done the right thing? God knows. Anthony has been awake all night panicking about it. There were little worrying things (like the way it needed jumpstarting *ahem* - but that's a battery issue, and they are replacing that for us) but essentially I think it seemed pretty good. It accelerates, it brakes, it steers. I reckon that's a pretty good start.
We have drive a LOT of shockers over recent weeks, so I do feel we're less inexperienced than we think we are. We've SEEN the cars without exhaust pipes, the ones that don't steer and leave you screaming in the middle of traffic, the ones that spit little black bombs out the exhaust pipe. This doesn't do any of that. She's not the world's prettiest car, I'll admit, the door is scratched to buggery, and she's getting on a bit. We think we're her last owners, realistically, but I reckon she'll be right. God, I hope...
We shall see.