Jettisoning the Jetta

My 1990 VW Jetta (Wolfsberg edition) is no longer. No longer in my life, that is. After we had it towed to our usual garage (expensive, but very good), we decided that if the repair cost more than 150 bucks, we were going to give it up. Of course, true to its decaying nature, the car was going to cost us more than double our maximum limit. We decided to dump the sucker.


I guess I shouldn’t be so cavalier: I was saddened by the thought of giving up the Jetta–there’s a lot of history with between me and ol’ Jetty (I don’t usually give cars names; for the past two years, it’s been called “THAT car”). It was the first car my husband and I ever bought in our semi-young lives at the time–we often looked back fondly over the memory being profoundly screwed by the car dealership. That car drove us from San Francisco to Ashland, Oregon several times with no problems, even when it was 113° in Redding, California. It also moved us to Klamath Falls, Oregon after I accepted my first full-time position as a brand-spankin’ new librarian. After eight months in KF, we were driving that thing over the Siskiyous every weekend. (“Want Thai food? Let’s go to Medford!”). Years later, when I started my position at Sequent Computer Systems, the Jetta was crucial in breaking the ice with my new co-workers (“Is that a diesel?” “What’s that thing growing on your dashboard?”) Good times….

So I did get teary-eyed and just about ready to fork out $324 dollars out of nostalgia when the garage kindly presented me with a list of other work the Jetta needed. Bye-bye money-pit.

But all was not lost. We donated the car to Volunteers of America. They’ll take cars, running or not and use them to raise money for charitable organizations. We were even able to specify which organization the money goes to–in our case, it was a women’s residential shelter. We got a tax deduction, but better yet, we walked out feeling really good about the whole process. Why? Some friends and relatives think I’m an idiot for not selling the Jetta and using the money for a down payment on a new car. In their minds, that kind of charity is for soft-hearted suckers.

All I can say is, if that’s what being a sucker is all about, then I can get very used to it….

Tip o’ the Day: This one comes from the unique mind of Sheila Bankhead of Panama City, Florida. I wonder if she’s related to Tallulah?

Never be without a glue stick. It works wonders on runs in your stockings, and may be used to patch a burn hole (for those of us who are unregenerate (degenerate?) smokers by snipping a tiny piece of cloth from your hem and gluing it on the back. The purple glue stick is the best!

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