Monday, June 16, 2014

the albatross

When we lived in Miami I broke down and bought my dream car (under duress), a '71 Karmann Ghia autostick convertible.  The thought was, when else am I going to make the leap?  The reality of it is that for a "dream car" (I've been pointing these out every time I saw them since I was 10) they're relatively cheap, can be dependable, make a good daily driver in tropical and flat Miami, and we had an awesome repair shop that specialized in vintage air-cooleds (The Wizards in Coral Gables).

I'm pretty sure she much preferred the weather in Miami
and going to car shows instead of watching us work on the house 24/7

Now when we moved to less than tropical Pittsburgh, a garage was supposed to be a requirement for anything we bought.  We know how that worked out...

We left Daphne in South Florida safely tucked into my parents garage until we figured out exactly what we would do.  We eventually bought one of those tarp type carports, and assembled it on our concrete slab in preparation for bringing her home.  Unfortunately, by the time she got here her shed was full of house parts.

Our first "garage"

This is the part where I reveal just what a horrible person I am.  Before we got the shed unloaded to park her inside for the winter she got a flat tire, and ended up parked under a tree that first winter because I convinced myself I needed to save up and buy a set of whitewalls ($$$$$).  That following spring we moved the schoolhouse, thinking we'd have it up and built by the end of the summer.  We moved the carport to store schoolhouse parts, landlocking the ghia until the shed could be moved.  We never did order those tires...

stranded between all the woodpiles

Well, another winter has passed, the schoolhouse is built but all the siding is still neatly piled up inside, and Daphne still sat under her tree.

Two days ago I saw a groundhog crawl underneath her.  It was more than I could take.  With nightmarish visions of warrens of groundhogs making a home underneath her I pulled off the cover - half expecting her to be stuffed to the brim with leaves and acorns.  Nope, only some very large spiders.  She was pretty well rusted into place, but we freed her up by jacking up the tires to loosen them up, and with help we got her rolled out of her resting place.  A new battery, tightening up the belt, fresh gas and 10 minutes of trying to turn over the engine and she sputtered to life, blowing out a billow of black smoke and spiderwebs out of her tail pipes.  Two plain old tires are ordered and on their way here.

 I have to say it's nice to have one less thing eating away at me, and she makes a nice little escape pod for when the house gets to be too much.


  1. Heh, heh. This makes me feel less totally guilty about the delayed projects I have queued up.

    1. And it should! Anyone who can let such a cute car rot in their backyard deserves a special place in hell...

  2. We appear to be leading parallel lives. I totally get it. My Mustang is currently stuck in the garage with a leak of some sort. It's definitely power steering, but it may also be a hose AND transmission seal. Can't drive it until we figure out what to do. (call my mechanic is high on the list.) At least my conscience is eased a tiny bit because it is in the garage, but it is sandwiched between a shelving unit, a roll of carpet, two antique trunks, some lawn tools, and a riding mower.

    1. Sounds very familiar (although that's what you get for having fancy things like power steering lol)! As my old mechanic said about air-cooleds, "they're not leaking, they're marking their territory." Hope you get it sorted out soon, this weather's too lovely to waste.

  3. That care is very adorable indeed :3

    1. She's lovely, I still can't believe I own her at times!


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