Last week, I upgraded automobiles. Gone is the 1999 Saturn, affectionately known as the Plastik Vunderkar (let me someday tell you about selling cars on Craigslist. Holy cow). In is a 2004 Jetta, the Green Machine.
Having a car that runs a bit better like an actual car and not like a Barbie corvette Matchbox car made me think I would soon be experiencing the wide open spaces of the crowded city avenues like this:
After all, this car was built for the autobahn!
However, this new-to-me car has a lot more bells and whistles. More accurately: things most modern drivers think everyone has, but in fact, everyone did not. For example: a sun roof, power locks with the little hand held remote so I can “meep meep” my car from 20 feet away, power windows, an automatic transmission. In addition to the new things, I am still working on finding all the standard things. It took me 3 minutes to figure out how to turn the lights on. We had a light drizzle here the other day and I had my windshield wipers on “Hyperspeed Go-Go-Gadget NO RAINDROPS EVER” mode because I could not get them to slow down. A check engine light came on for an issue not even remotely related to the engine. Yesterday I accidently hit the panic button in my pocket while walking crutching loudly away from the car, scaring the dickens right out of a handful of delightful senior ladies out for a walk.
Today, the whole drive in to work, the “door ajar” light was illuminated, and I figured this was just like the check engine light. So it says the door is ajar, I thought, but I can see that no doors are, in fact, ajar. What else could it be? Is it because there is condensation on the back window? I’ll turn on the defroster. Wait. How do I do that? Oh, here. Good. Nope, some non-door is still not ajar. Hmmm.
After a string of button mashing operations that included opening and closing the windows and sunroof, unlocking and relocking all the doors, turning on the hazards and then turning them off, it dawned on me. Yesterday, when I hit the panic button, I probably also hit the trunk release button!
When I got to the parking lot, that truth was confirmed. Luckily, the trunk requires some strength to actually open even once the latch has been released, so I wasn’t that idiot who drove all the way to work with their trunk all gaping.
Still, I have downgraded my expectations of the new-car-driving experience. Not because the car isn’t great, but because it is likely smarter than me. This is a more accurate visual representation of my life on the autobahn: