Wednesday 9 March 2011

My ladies car

My car is flashing her orange warning light at me again. I care not for the orange warning light. It is like a little harbinger of doom on your dashboard, a little flashing light that smirks evilly at me "I'm going to cost you money" and does the mwah ha ha ha evil laugh.

2 weeks ago I had to replace the brake pads and that cost me at least a pair of LK Bennett peep toe platforms or a White Company Westbourne duvet cover, 4 Oxford pillowcases and a fitted sheet.

Yesterday the evil orange engine malfunction light reappeared. Summoning all my huge and extensive mechanical knowledge it feels like another coil has gone. My flighty car may have already worn her coil out. Is she drving someone else on the side?

I fear my car is me in mechanical form and she is now tired. When she was bought 9 years ago she was never expected to go anywhere further than the shops. She was a ladies car, a Mummy car, she took the children to ballet, rugby, Brownies, music lessons, swimming lessons etc and me to the supermarket. She did little short trips 30 minutes at most. She was indeed A class.

She never had to do early starts, dear me no, she was allowed to wake up gently, we never went anywhere before 9.30am, the children were walked to school, I would return and have coffee and then we would be off, to nice lady places like the gym or the coffee shop.

However life has changed for both of us. I am no longer an executive wife who worked 2 or 3 mornings a week because I liked it. I am someone who has to work to pay for life. I need a car to do it.

Sometimes I have to leave at 6.30 am and drive 90 miles to be training at 9am. This has been a huge shock to both the car and me. For the first 5 years I had my car I only did 5,000 miles a year, I now average 1200 miles per month. My lovely car feels it's just too much for her, she's getting on for 60,000 miles on her clock and it's beginning to show. She wants to protect her lady status, she is absolutely fine on short trips but my long work trips are when she protests.

I didn't want to take the company car and the fuel card I am entitled to as part of my package. I love my car. But I can't afford the garage bills and the soaring fuel costs. I think I will have to reluctantly accept my fate of the company car, I can have an Astra or an Astra and there is no metallic purple option either.

My lovely ladies car will be passed on to Eldest Beautiful Daughter for when she passes her test. Don't hold your breath, she phones me and in tones of great excitement lists what she can do after each lesson, after lesson 6 she actually managed to get into 3rd gear and she can now turn right if there is no oncoming traffic, if there are cars coming, she pretends she hasn't heard the instructor and just carries on to the next right turn that's clear.

So reluctantly I will apply for my company car but I will miss my lovely lady car.

However if Mercedes read this and feel that they need the kudos that having their A classes driven by a middle aged mummy blogger with a penchant for The White Company, they should feel free to replace my lovely A class and I would be happy with any colour, it doesn't have to be metallic purple.

And The White Company? c'mon what's keeping you? would you not like some beautifully written bed porn reviews?


Nota Bene said...

Your car wears a coil? Tart.

Sueann said...

Our truck has 294,000 miles on her and she runs like a champ. A little worse for wear but long trips are no problem. 60,000 is just getting started and already slowing down?? Tsk! Tsk!
Good luck with the company car...looks like you have no choice!

Andy said...

Just take the orange bulb out.

Why bother with expensive causes when you can just deal with the symptoms cheaply?

AGuidingLife said...

60,000 on a diesel is like the lady equivilent of 30! She should go for years yet and your confidence in her will peak around 90,000 (45) and then little bits start to break and you wonder if you should replace her for a younger model but you feel bad about deceiving her after all she gave you the best years of her life. I also want to yell "Open the box, take the Astra, Open the box, take the Astra" no idea why! Toodel-loo

Gigi said...

Your car is 9 years old and only has 60,000?! My car is not quite 6 and already has almost 80,000 and I don't seem to ever go anywhere.

Elderberry-Rob said...

Sorry to be merchant of doom, orange light may be your car asking politely for some diagnostics equipment to be plugged into its sensitive parts. Hey, you won't need a duvet soon - summers coming - but you will still need a car....

Working Mum said...

I've just changed my 12 year old lady car for a newer lady car. Love little lady cars; how else would I manage to park?

Sandi said...

Hehe @ Nota Bene & Andy.
I guess it will be an Astra then!!! At least your lady car will still be in the family. Sounds like she may have a little rest before she needs to drive your EBD around :) You should start a 'Help Auntie Gwen purchase White Company Duvet and accessories' fund. Then when we come visit we get to stoke and admire said bedroom beauties.
x Sandi

Anonymous said...

I drove the first car I ever bought for 17 years, and the second one for 13. I'm now on the third, and I intend to beat my record. Let's hear it for solid German engineering!

Looking for Blue Sky said...

Perhaps Hot Boy could help? Surely someone could manage a purple paint job on an Astra?

Anonymous said...

Oh boy....swapping your A-Class for an Astra...that's gonna hurt! C'mon this lady out...have a heart damn you...

Rarelesserspotted said...

I just love the values you put to the cost of repairs... this is the relaity of life. Superb.

Kitty said...

Nota Bene made me laugh :)

Use the work car for long-distance work driving and Lady Car for swanning around toi-même. Voilà.

(Hope Orange Light isn't too costly.)

Hugs and quiches, Kitty xx

Curry Queen said...

Keep buying those lottery tickets! I do - to no avail so far but am ever the optimist!

libby said...

Give me a warning about staying off the roads if you ever give EBD some driving lessons.....and yes go for the company car....x

katyboo1 said...

I sympathise with your car trouble. It sucks doesn't it? I am waiting for the verdict on mine today. There will undoubtedly be teeth sucking involved.

A couple of years ago we had a holiday where one of the selling points was that all the bed linen was White Company. I was the only one in the entire party who was excited about this, but it was wonderful. Oscar was really small then, so we had cot linen, and I nearly stole his ABC duvet cover I wanted it so badly.


auntiegwen said...

NB - you dream of driving my car, you can't deny it

SueAnn - I know everyone elses cars go for ever :( xx

Andy - oh for every problem there is a simple solution

S - it's a petrol car so probably I should take the Astra :(

Gigi - but you do seem to have to drive everywhere in America, when we have holidayed in Florida there were great big lumps of road with no pavement (sidewalk) we had no choice but to drive

Betty - the nice garage man tells me that, it's when they go red it's a big problem

WM - I know, I love my car for that very reason

Sandi - don't laugh at NB and Andy, it encourages them and I love your idea but I'm not sure my mother would be pleased if I charged visitors to my bedroom by the stroke!!!!

Pinklea - if I still did lady driving it's be grand, it's just real driving tires her out :)

LFBS - oh I pinned all my dreams on Hot Boy getting famous and then he would have to buy me things so I killed the blog and didn't tell the world about him, now he's gone and quit I need to rethink my plans for world domination oh all right new fitted kitchen

Lottie - they are being singularly unhelpfully Germanic about my plight

Steve - I do all things by nice lady maths I could pay my gas bill or buy.... xxx

Kitty - when EBD passes her test I will go for the company car, it might be a while so I will just suck it up and pay the orange light piper meantime

CQ - I can't even load my lottery account with cash at the moment, I'll have to go inot the shop

Libby - I know it's a scary thought isn't it? xx

Mrs Boo - I read about your head whatsist and it sounded expensive even to me, you could do a whole bedroom in White Company for that money, probably have enough for a frock and curry chips on the way home as well. Hope all things improve in the Haus of Boo

Taz said...

I'm not sure how my car is still going but I'm going with the theory that it likes NOT having regular baths and is a free spirit enjoying showers in the rain and snow and sleet... and that the constant splashes of mud, grit, cow manure are holding it together.

Just think though a company car breaks means someone else fixes it ;)

Anonymous said...

The orange engine light is always on on my dashboard (120,000 miles and counting - and a friend with an older car worries when hers goes off). The garage turn mine off each time it goes in, and it comes back on within 24 hours. So I don't worry about it any more. Yes, mine does have mechanical problems; I have spent so much on it in the last year I want at least another year's wear out of it before I think of replacing it.

Driving Lessons Newark said...

The orange light on my car has been on for almost a year now, I've actually learnt to completely ignore it when I'm driving. I'm guessing that as I've been able to continue to drive it for this long, there can't be anything seriously wrong with it. Hope I haven't just jinxed myself, knowing my luck it'll break down tomorrow on the way to work!