Favorite Memories From My ’96 Volkswagen Jetta
1. To visit Amber while I was in Ohio and she was in Michigan, I frequented the turnpike (for speed and ease). One time, as I was getting on the turnpike to come home from her house (aka, the beginning of the 5 hour trip), I rolled my window down to get the ticket, like I had done many times before. But this time my window decided not to go back up. So I drove the whole way home at 75 mph with my window down getting pummeled by the air that was whipping in the window.
2. After a week at Beyond Camp, I was just ready to grab some sweet food at Donatos. On my way, I pulled up to a stoplight behind a couple cars and in front of some more. When the light turned green, the cars in front of me began to move forward and my car decided to die..in the street…at a green light…with a growing line of cars behind me (thrilled I’m sure). So, I proceeded to pop ‘er into neutral, get out of the car, and with the guy behind me, push my car backward into the parking lot of a Mexican restaurant. It sat there in the parking lot until I could get it towed.
3. I lived off campus my (2nd) senior year of college and the place where I stayed had a curb around the back as you would drive around to the other side. One day I had come back from classes and was looking forward to some chill time when I decided to zip up my backpack before I got out of the car…as I was driving…next to the giant cement curb. Before I could say, “George Washington Carver”, I had hit the curb with my back tire and since my windows were down, I was able to hear a distinct “Klunk” followed by a sinister “Phsssssssss.” The second sound was the air escaping from a silver dollar-sized hole in my tire. Had to get ‘er towed to the tire place.
4. Not so much a single memory, but a long and terrible joke that wasn’t funny and never quite got to the punch-line. The molding on the side of my car was, for some reason, only held on by some adhesive (or Scotch tape) instead of being secured by some sort of clip. Well, the adhesive began to give out and the molding began to start falling off my car. The first one fell off somewhere on the road because when I pulled in the driveway, it was just gone. I lost another one in the previous manner and the other two I straight up ripped off because they were hanging by a thread. They’re still in my trunk, mocking me.
5. Another time as I was driving home on the turnpike after a fun time of hanging out with Amber, I decided to be a good Student Ministries intern and pop in a sermon to listen to. I grabbed an Erwin McManus sermon from when he was at Thirsty (conference for leaders) and headed home (again, 5 hours). Since it was someone speaking, I’ve got it up pretty loud so I can hear him over the road noise. And after about 30 minutes or so, I go over a bump and the CD mysteriously gets stuck. Let me define “stuck.” I can’t take the CD out. I can’t turn the volume down. I can’t switch it to radio. So for about 4 hours, I drove home while getting shouted at by Erwin McManus as the CD repeated itself about 3 1/2 times. Once I get home and turn the car off (CD player still stuck, Erwin still shouting), my dad tells me to take out the fuse. Once I do that, the CD pops right out.
6. The only window that works is the front seat on the passenger side. So any simple situation that you would normally roll down your window for (drive-thru, taking a ticket when you’re on the turnpike or entering a parking garage, trying to speak to someone, spitting out your gum) requires me to open my door. It’s kind of tricky when you’re taking the ticket, and when there’s a person there, I ALWAYS have to open door, half-laugh and say, “The window doesn’t work.” It’s also really cool when someone runs up to your car like they forgot to tell you something really important and give you the “roll down your window” motion and I have to give them the “back up 3 feet while I open my door” motion.
7. The clips on the distributor cap rusted away, but the clips aren’t sold by themselves. So rather than drop $250 on a whole new piece, the mechanic creatively decided to use 2 zip-ties. Needless to say, it’s a less than air-tight seal, and it since that’s where the spark plug is, it has some trouble starting when moisture gets in there. So when it rains or if it’s foggy out, or someone was crying within a 500 foot radius, my car won’t start. Then, if it might accidentally start, it acts like it’s waking up from a long nap as it stalls out a couple times (usually at a stop light or as I’m turning) and as I pull into my destination, I’m wrapping up a prayer for my life to be spared. Thanks, Jesus. I owe you one.
8. An extension of this problem (which I didn’t foresee) occurred when I, once again, was returning home from a trip to Michigan to visit Amber (just something about that state, I guess). Anyway, apparently there was a monsoon on the turnpike about an hour before I got on it because there was water all over the road. Well, during a particularly deep section of water, I drove through it, got a little too much water up under my car, and it stalled out as I was, you know, cruising along the turnpike. I coast to the side of the road, open the hood, and try to dry it off under there so I can hopefully get it started again. Forty minutes later, I was back on the road and avoiding every puddle on the road.