My trusty Ford Explorer has served me well, but , alas, it is time we parted ways. We got the bad news this week that it will require several major repairs just to make it safe to drive. I’m thankful I made it to the mechanic’s without incident!
My truck (I know, it's technically an SUV. But truck is just easier to say than S-U-V.) has gotten me through many winters with its wonderful 4-wheel drive! It's so nice to be able to get out and go in the snow, when I would have gotten stuck in the driveway with a car or minivan. (For those of you who have never seen our home, our driveway is - quite literally - uphill both ways!)
It has also gotten me safely to and from our church youth camps in Missouri and Pennsylvania for many, many years. And several of those years, I hauled archery equipment, happy campers and all our gear as well! It's taken us to Wisconsin and Missouri, among others, for the Feast of Tabernacles.
It has helped Brian pull trees and firewood from the woods; it has towed his tractor when it wouldn't start a time or two. It's hauled drywall and other home improvement items; it's carried the recycling containers to the collection point; it's taken Annie to many therapy dog visits... It's been a very steady and reliable utility vehicle, as well as my main mode of transportation to work every day for the past nine years.
And while it is paid off (has been for quite some time) and the repair costs would be much less than a year’s worth of car payments, the vehicle is just not worth that much. It had 122,000 miles on it when I purchased it nine years. Today is has 230,000 miles! And it’s twelve years old. It has been a wonderful vehicle for me. I really want to purchase another Explorer when the time comes.
But right now, with our budget crunch, I don’t know when that time will be. We don’t have the money to do the repairs to it, and we DEFINITELY don’t have the money to purchase another vehicle at this time.
While I was mulling all this over and feeling down, God helped me to see the good news from this bad news. With the money we will get from selling the truck, we can make some needed, though not urgent, repairs to the van to get it in tip-top shape. We will save money on our weekly gas budget as well as on our car insurance. Those funds can be put into a savings account for a down payment on our next vehicle.
I called the license bureau today to see if I could be refunded for the license renewal I had just sent in. I still have the tags and have not put them on the license plates yet. I didn’t think I would be able to, but I thought it was worth a try. Guess what?! I can be refunded everything but $3.50, which I’m assuming is some kind of processing fee. Yay! That will go into the savings account, too.
So, for now, we are down to one vehicle. Thankfully, Brian drives a company vehicle most of the time, so I don't have to share a ride with him and go in to work at all sorts of crazy hours! (not that I would mind sharing a ride with him, but I really don't need to be at the office at 7 a.m.) So, we set a goal of saving until the end of the year and then looking for another vehicle. I can live with that.
I will miss my truck. We went a lot of places together and hauled a lot of people and things around. And it kept me out of a lot of snowbanks and ditches.
Thanks for the memories!