Once upon a time I was 23 years old. We purchased our first mini-van. I know for some the idea is quite ghastly, but truly there are worse things in life (read on and you'll see). Our first minivan was involved in a minor fender bender at very low speeds but the accident somehow managed to total the vehicle out. Enter minivan #2--a 2005 Chrysler Town & Country complete with "stow and go" that looked like this:
And then someone--who will remain nameless--brought that van's existence to an end also. (Psst, it wasn't me . . .shhhhhh) ;o) At this point it was in our best fiscal interest to replace it with this:
I know, I know it's very rare, an original minivan. Vintage. And as my oldest daughter was quick to point out it has a different set of hubcaps on each side. How cool is that!
Actually, those really weren't my thoughts the first time I laid eyes on this baby. I was horrified. I was mortified. You want me to drive what!?!?!?!
Now, there are some perks to buying an older vehicle:
#1 The vehicle is bought and paid for.
#2 You can leave your keys in the ignition with a sign that says "Steal me please" and no one bites.
#3 It still gets you from point A to point B
#4 Did I mention it is bought and paid for?
Unfortunately, there are some downsides too. I am pretty sure if you were to cross-reference with the Greek the "thorn in my flesh" that Paul was talking about in 2 Corinthians 12 you will find a picture of this minivan. It's ugly. It has only one sliding door on the passenger side. The oil requires constant attention. There's room for people but not much else. The seatbelt is really touchy (as in I wrestle with it to unlock nearly every time I attempt buckling up). The back has latching issues. But, it's the gas cap that is one of my biggest struggles. The first time I had to fill up I struggled at the pump for several minutes before finally calling Josh and having him walk me through how to get the gas cap off. It was originally a locking gas cap with a little key. However, previous owners lost said key. You can still get the cap off without the key, but it requires me pushing all my weight against the cap and turning really slowly. It's quite an art. Needless to say, I have been embarassed many a time at the pump because I could not get the cap off. And THIS is the point of this incredibly long story!
Today while attempting to fill my van with gas I could not get the nozzle to go in. Here I had made it through the potentially embarassing look-at-the-woman-who-can't-get-her-own-gas-cap-off situation only to be faced with another equally mortifying situation. I kept jamming it repeatedly and it just wouldn't fit. So, I peered down to investigate what the problem was. Are you ready for this?
There was an acorn blocking the nozzle's passage.
Now how, you ask does an acorn get underneath the impossible to remove gas cap? You get one guess, and only one. My girls claim it wasn't them. And I'm pretty sure it wasn't the work of Emmett. Figured it out yet?
So, I removed the acorn and proceeded to fill 'er up, however, I continued to have problems with getting the gas to go in. It kept clicking off, like it was full. At the moment, I'm a bit concerned that perhaps that was not the only acorn involved--perhaps there were smaller ones that somehow made it into the "pipe" --or whatever it is called, that goes into the tank. Which reminds me again, that while I may not be in my dream vehicle, I am still thankful that I have transportation. It can be easy to take that for granted. So, here's hoping that there aren't anymore little acorns lying in wait to cause havoc with the van's fuel intake. And I will continue to give myself the daily pep talk, "I have a vehicle, it may be ugly, but it works." And they lived happily every after. The end.