Honey Wine

We have weird relationships with our cars. They're a little bit friend, a little bit pet, a little bit family member. I've owned three cars in my life, and every time, the relationship has ended the same way: with a feeling of melancholy as I watch the car being hauled away by a tow truck.

My first car was a 1982 Buick Skyhawk. I spent an ungodly number of hours washing dishes at North Colorado Medical Center to earn the money to buy it. It was sort of a cream color, which worked out nicely. It was the exact color of dirt, so no one could tell how badly it always needed to be washed. The "UIC" had fallen off of the back, leaving behind "B K," which resulted in it being referred to alternately as the Blood Killa or the Burger King. The missing letters were just a sign of things to come, as the whole thing fell apart pretty quickly over the course of a couple of years, but I got more or less what I expected out of it.

After that, I paid my parents $1000 for their '89 GMC Jimmy, aka the James. The paint on the James was peeling, leaving behind an ever-growing patch of rust on the roof. It wasn't a great car by any stretch of the imagination, but it was perhaps a step up from the old Buick. It was responsible for several tons of Papa John's pizza being delivered to the good people of Greeley for a couple of years. Had I not put it through that abuse, it might have lasted another year or so.

After the untimely death of the James, I went to a used car lot. I was tremendously excited to drive away in a '95 Pontiac Sunfire. It was eventually christened Honey Wine for reasons I don't really remember. It turned out to be something of a lemon...but I loved it even so. It took me to California and back twice, to Mt. Rushmore, up to Wyoming a few times, all over Colorado. It hauled loads upon loads of groceries, and even a load of lumber one time. On the other hand, the engine needed to be replaced a few months after I bought the damn thing, and then damn near fell out a few years later.

Honey Wine crapped out for good and all about six months ago. Since then, it's been sitting in our parking space, rotting and being a general eyesore. In anticipation of our upcoming move, we've given up the parking space, and Honey Wine at long last had to go.

The tow truck hauled it away this afternoon. I was in some ways glad to see it go. But I also thought about what the car had meant to me, and I had to fight back a few tears, too. I've felt a bit sad seeing it rot in the parking space these past months, but at least it was there. It's gone now, and though I know it's irrational and silly, I'm going to miss it. Adios, Honey Wine. Thanks for the memories.