Well, it's very early -- not yet six am and not yet daylight. I am up and at it already. Ben left the house a while ago to head out for his latest temp job some forty five minutes away. I shudder to think about Michigan's future -- the economy and job market are going down the drain and the state has a budget deficit of more than three quarters of a billion dollars. The auto industry that used to drive the entire state economy is in a mess and the ripple effect is devastating. Add to that the record high gas prices and it's no wonder that people are scared! I am in the beginning stages of searching for another vehicle. My 1994 Chrysler is running alright, but it is on borrowed time -- the electrical system is either dying or it's possessed. If that goes, that will be the end. And of course car shopping is one of my "favorite" things. I prefer root canal surgery! Why can't automobile dealers clearly mark the prices and let me wander among the choices? Why is there this game of dicker and barter reminicent of a garage sale? And then there's the "pig in a poke" problem -- where has this car been? Did it get imported from New Orleans after Katrina? Was it a star in the demo derby? Did it belong to someone who never heard of maintenance? And on top of that -- I don't know for sure exactly what I am looking for -- good solid transportation, fairly low miles, good gas mileage (no SUVs please), etc. I have some ideas as to size and all, but the money, mileage, and economy factors will ultimately drive the decision. SO -- where do I go look? I was at one lot last night and you'd have thought the salesman was my new best friend. All the chatter and patter and charm of a snake oil salesman. Are there any ethical customer oriented auto salespeople out there? If so, let me know where -- I will go give them my business. The whole car shopping thing makes me sick to my stomach and leaves me with a splitting headache. I did see a couple of nice cars, but I guess I'm not quite ready to take the plunge.
On top of all the usual rigors of the car shopping torture is the financial concern. How long will this temp job last? Will Ben find the right call soon? Will I? Will we have to spend the money for rentals, moving expenses, and other living expenses? Do I dare take on another obligation? Stay tuned -- I'm sure there will many car salesman stories ahead. I wonder how many of them end up in politics? Hmmmmm.