I took a weekend trip to Boca Raton to sell my mother’s car. It was a 2003 Toyota Corolla.
Mom piled up 31,000 miles on that car in 15 years. Not dissimilar for our first family car, a 1956 Chevrolet sedan that we finally unloaded in 1974 after 18 years and 39,000 miles.
Unfortunately for my oldest sister, she had to learn to drive on that old unair-conditioned, non-power steering warhorse (Note, the car pictured is not ours, but a reasonable facsimile). Of course I had to learn on our next car, a used Ford Maverick (image another facsimile). Which, as car afictionados can attest, could well be the worst American car of the latter part of the 20th century, right down there with the Pinto and Gremlin. So we had, in essence, two of the ugliest and difficult cars around.
But I digress.
Mom had a small fender dent on the rear driver side. She had no clue how it got there. Had she backed into something (hopefully not someone)? Had someone struck her car? It was a documented flaw in my mom’s driving record; she was quite proud of noting that in her 65 years of driving she never had a moving accident or ticket.
Again, I digress.
While driving my own rented Ford Focus (excellent small car!), I once again encountered the great South Florida driving phenomenon. The phenomenon where half the population, like mom, drives slowly and unsteadily, while the other half drives Boston crazy to escape them.
In South Florida, you simply never know when you’re going to encounter something like I did Sunday as I pulled into a shopping center nearly being struck by a car on the way out (older driver) and thought, “Man, that car was pretty close.” Then I realized as I turned around to look at her. Yeah, she was on the wrong side of the median.
Another trip a couple of years ago, a person decided to park in the Target parking lot, Just randomly park, the heck with those parking space lines. Driver just left the car right in the middle of a row.
As I write this blog, I’m at 33,000 feet on the flight back to North Carolina. I’m wondering how many trips to South Florida are left. Crazy to say, but I think I’m going to miss those driving adventures. Hazard or not, they were fascinating, amusing and a reminder of my mom’s world.