Thursday, February 18, 2010

Thoughtful About . . . Bartok the Jeep

Again, TWO giveaways to remind you of! First is Friday's of Deliver Us from Evil by Robin Caroll (romantic suspense), and then Tuesday's of The Stones by Eleanor Gustafson (Biblical Fiction).

And while I'm reminding, don't forget to check out giveaways of A Stray Drop of Blood on ICFW, A Fiction-Filled Life, and Mary's Musings.


Okay, one of my quirks. I name my cars. And not just mine, mind you--I also named my then-boyfriend's Jeep when he first got it back in high school. (Then-boyfriend equals now-husband, for those of you who aren't aware.)

When David got his Jeep, it was only a few years old but had over a hundred thousand miles--it was a guy's business vehicle, and he made a lot of trips with it. All highway miles, and it had been very well maintained. This was round about the time the Anastasia animated movie came out, which I adored. I promptly dubbed his Jeep Bartok, after the little white bat in the movie, which was by far my favorite character. (The Jeep's green, but you know. Who cares about details like that?)

So, Bartok the Jeep underwent more commuting with David's step-father, who drives for a living . . . and then went to college with us. College was 2.5 hours away, just close enough to mean we came home every other weekend or so. Far enough that those miles kept piling up on the odometer.

Bartok now has approximately 370,000 miles. Yes, you read that right. Three hundred seventy THOUSAND miles. (We're doing all we can to get it to a million. Think the Jeep folks will give us some kind of prize for that??)

Well, when a fifteen year-old Jeep has that many miles, you just have to assume it's going to be even quirkier than I am. That weird jingle? Yeah, that's been there for years. The vibration in the dash? Get used to it.

But sometimes Bartok goes beyond quirky and into growl-inducing. Yes, it's to be expected. But when the thing follows up weird noises and fritzed-out dash lights/blinkers/heaters with not restarting? Not. Cool. Luckily, this happened the other day when we were at the library, so had it not started back up, we would have at least been stranded with limitless reading material. =)

For those curious, my hubby managed to jiggle wires in the steering column until the key would turn and we could get home, but still. I had to give Bartok a pat and say something like, "Poor old boy. We'll get you fixed up."

Because you just can't abandon a work horse that will gladly travel over chunks of ice, puddles of slush, barrels of mud, and feet of snow. A machine that keeps going and going as that half-mil mark draws ever closer on its odometer. A member of the family that will probably outlast the more stylish and luxurious Xander, who lives in the garage bay beside it.

So here's to Bartok. You deserve a toast, baby. We'll get you all fixed up with a new relay or whatever in no time. (And will have that rust fixed soon too!) Three cheers to you, ol' boy!


  1. I name my cars too. My first car was an 85 Honda Accord, quite dependable, but a bit aged and rheumatic. I named it Bert after the bottlecap collecting muppet. Seemed like the sort of habit my car might have.

    Hey, will you enter me for the books, please? They sound great. Thanks!

  2. You're a riot! Thank you for making me laugh, I needed that today.

    Also ... I noticed the book cover for "A Stray Drop of Blood" ... It is Beautiful.

  3. Thanks, Aine! I was so thrilled with the cover when the design came in. And you know, you could hold that cover in your hands for the low, low price of $15.00. ;-) Kidding. I mean, I'm not, that is the price, but I'm not really the type to tell people to buy my book in every conversation. Although I just did, but really. Joking.

    And Roseanna's going to finish her coffee now and pray it leads to intelligible-ness. Intelligibility? Yes. Intelligibility.