Monday, August 24, 2015

Odysseus, Orpheus, and the Quest for a New Car

My attempts to buy a car have now descended to the level of farce.  (Or Greek myth.  If someone told me the gods were messing with me, I would be relieved - at least then I would have an explanation.)

After a number of previous setbacks, I worked up my gumption, checked dealer inventories and set off on Saturday to test drive (and possibly buy!) a model/trim that is on my shortlist. 

We arrive at the biggest car dealership I've ever seen, but alas we do not see the car.  Salesman says not to worry. He will locate it - every car on the mega-lot has GPS on their locator system. 

Every car except that one.

We hop in another car with our salesman and drive it around the mega-lot, looking for the distinctive blue paint of the missing stick-shift model.  He realizes it may have been moved to an overflow lot off site and drives us over there.  Voila!  It exists!

And the keys are locked inside it.

Not to worry! Salesman leaves us in the overflow lot and runs back to the main lot to get the spare key.  He returns triumphant!

And the battery is dead.

Salesman runs back.  Gets a jumper box.  The car starts!

And the alarm goes off.

Only way to turn off the alarm is to turn off the engine, but once the alarm is deactivated, the car refuses to start again.  Turn the ignition and click-click-click.  Nada.  Salesman decides to try jumper cables to another car, under the assumption that the jumper box is out of juice.  Goes to fetch the cables.  Returns.

Click-click-click.  Nada.

Salesman confesses there was the beginnings of a nest of some sort near the battery.  Something might have chewed through a wire... The service department will have to look at it. 

And they've all just gone home for the day.

But if I buy today, I can get an amazing deal!  I decline, preferring to buy cars that run.

We head to Dealer #2 - much smaller, but I've checked their inventory and they have the model/trim I'm considering.  We make it there before closing.  We see the car.  A salesman sneaks up on us (in a strangely creepy manner).  I express a desire to test-drive the car.  No problem!  I hand over my license.  The salesman asks for proof of insurance.  "But I don't own a car."  (He does not seem to understand that insurance companies insure CARS, not random carless drivers.  Keeps referring to me as "never having been insured" even after I explain to him that I have had insurance in the past, but I do not currently because I was living in Manhattan where I did not want a car and then have been renting cars as needed and using my credit card insurance for the rentals since leaving the City.)  Alas, he can't let us drive the car without proof of insurance.  He will not even unlock it. 

But he wants to talk numbers.  I can get a great deal if I buy today.

I return home carless.  Again.

The Fates are screwing with me.

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