The thing about life in the big city is that you don't need a car.
Unless you're in L.A. or another car-centric city, public transportation is usually abundant enough that cars just aren't necessary.
That was great for a while – in my big city life, I loved the freedom of not needing a car or car insurance. Oil changes and gas stations never crossed my mind.
But when our last few weeks in London turned into an endless loop of moving from flat to flat by cab and on foot, I began to get excited about having a car again.
"Imagine if we had a car," we'd say to ourselves as we lugged trash bags of personal belongings from front door to cab to front door, then up a few staircases. All we'd have to do is wheel our luggage out to the car, put the luggage in said car, and drive away.
Suddenly being able to choose when you walked and when you drove felt like freedom to me. Life on the open road, or at least a road that will take you home from the grocery store with your gallons of milk stowed safely in the backseat rather than slowly leaking throw the tote bag you've been carrying for the last half mile.
Yes, life on the open road. The luxury of it all is almost too much to handle.
But now that we've reached the point where we're almost ready to get a car (and shout out to my mom for letting us borrow her car in the meantime) we've reached a pretty big question:
What kind of car to get? The last time I drove a car that was my own, I was in Atlanta and 22. I was about to move to New York, say goodbye to my car, and say hello to the world of subways and walking.
The question of what kind of car to get now seems very big. Since it's been so long since I've had one, it seems like the car I get will now represent who I am.
Am I a black Prius person, or an old Volvo person? Honda Civic? Corolla? Cream MINI Convertible? (Yes please.) Old school truck with wooden side paneling?
These are the questions. And P.S. – the answer is probably a Civic or something equally responsible. But I'd still like to keep my options open, just for now.
What kind of car do you have? Any terrible experiences you'd be willing to share, or things I should know about? This will be my first adult car purchase, so help is appreciated.
And for the record, I still love walking and the freedom that living in a big city affords. I'll continue to walk now as much as I can, and I'm learning to embrace the world of bikes. Small cities were made for them, it seems.
But a car? A car is a different type of freedom.
Hello, open road.