Most people claim they want to have a good reliable car to drive in existential bliss, to enjoy the commute without having to worry about the check engine light suddenly illuminating or having any problems arise that distract us from our daily driving expedition. We want that our sturdy chariot magically transports us to our destination without a complaint. We rarely give our cars a word of thanks, or perhaps a small pat on the hood saying; “good car”. Seriously, when is the last time you said that much to your car?
If you really think about it, it is quite incredible that our cars do as much as they do without asking for much of anything. Indeed it is as much of a miracle that cars hardly ever break down as it is that they ever run at all! It is a wonder of wonders that this marvelous machine of 35,000 itty-bitty parts all go about their business of transporting us so effortlessly! It is truly one of the great achievements of technology, and yet we tend to expect, demand actually, that this beautiful creation of engineering do its’ job flawlessly. Every time.
Cars these days come with a veritable office-on-wheels, complete with heated leather seats with adjustable lumbar support, climate control, ergonomically placed cup holders, speaker phone, internet connection with Bluetooth and navigation with personal assistance, all within easy reach. If only the desk that I am writing had all of this stuff, which it certainly does not. The only thing missing is a copy machine and a stapler, but who uses paper these days anyhow? And yet we complain.
Our cars start everyday under fierce conditions and usher us smoothly and comfortably to our next appointment, whether it is to shuttle little Billy safely and comfortably to his next dental appointment or rush us to a business meeting or to get home safely after a hard day of work. And yet we lament anytime our car needs to be “serviced”. Why can’t they be maintenance-free? Just drive without any troubles.
We are disgruntled about the slightest inconveniences, we forget that our virtual magic carpet on wheels is pounding away mile after mile going headlong, sometimes 70-80 miles per hour into the elements that would kill us if we were not so magnificently protected by a sound insulated, water proof, hermetically sealed cabin with smart airbags that would fill the chamber like a giant overstuffed pillow in the rare event we need them.
That is not to mention the engine, transmission and the rest of god-knows-what that is hard at work, taking the brunt of most anything that gets thrown at it for hundreds of thousands of miles. It doesn’t ask for much in return really, just some fuel to keep it going and an oil transfusion every time it takes a trip that would be equivalent to a journey from California to New York (and back). That is an incredible feat for any land based vessel whether sentient or not.
So the next time you make that seemingly effortless 30 minute trip across town that would have otherwise taken you a treacherous 2 days on foot, show some respect. Give your car a big fat hug and kiss it and say thank you. Thank you for being all that you are. Thank you for being such a trusted companion in my life. You are a miracle that I depend on every day. I am so grateful that you are in my life. The word love might even be an appropriate description of your most humble feeling for this creature that happens to be your most trusted everyday companion. That is worth taking a pause and acknowledging the true gift that it brings you. Freedom.
The next time your car asks for just a little more than fuel and oil, treat it to a feast of attention as though you want to provide only the best. Love it up. In fact, don’t even wait until it asks, shower it with appreciation while it is still happy. Change the oil sooner than required. Change all the fluids (transmission, brake and power steering) at around 60,000 miles. Change the filters before they get clogged up. It is the least you can do in return for all that loyalty.
It is an old adage that you need to love to be loved. It’s called Karma. What goes around comes around. If you love your car it will pay you back 100,000 (mile) fold.
Greg Macke- Your Car Angel
Greg Macke is a car blogger and author of “My 7 Secrets to Buying a High Quality Used Car”. He is a professional car buyer and consumer advocate working closely in the industry to improve the buyer’s experience. His high quality car buying tutorials offer help to the car buying public. – See more at: http://yourcarangel.com/
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