Driving and Biking in the Big City

Road Warrior Vinny

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Vinny is ready for a canoe tripI have spent more time in the last 10 years with Vinny the hot red Nissan Xterra than I have with any other vehicle, creature, person, etc., in my life. He has protected me through four car crashes in Big City traffic, including the last one with a cardiovascular surgeon whose Lexus had to be towed away as we drove off to make it to work on time. Not to mention the earlier wrecks with folks who were more likely to be on the other side of the scalpel in my daily trek to the Texas Medical Center

I am irrationally attached to Vinny as I am to all of the named entities in my life. That’s why I’m having a hard time realizing we may be riding our last miles together as we cross the 160,000 mile mark.

When he passed inspection this year, I wept. My longtime mechanic and friend Dan – of Dan and Derrick and the old Texaco – also seemed to be a bit choked up at my enthusiasm. These are the guys who recommended a Nissan Xterra for me just a couple of years after the model was first marketed in 2000. This recommendation came after Dan begged me, “Please don’t make us fix your van again.” See, I do get attached.

Vinny has become exactly what I need for the 30-mile commute to the Big City every day. After being shiny and new for a couple of years, he is now the road warrior I always needed to get me through traffic and high water of a Big City that is flood prone. He sits up high so that I can view my domain and the whizzing 18-wheelers and lane weavers. He’s tough and resilient, fending off flying debris from big trucks in front of us. Sitting all day in a crowded lot in the medical center where aggressive parkers may or may not give him a smack.

Can’t imaging going back to something shiny and new and precious. Something that can’t take a curb, a median, a pothole or make a u-y at the sign of upcoming disaster. Something that has to be tended to, put in the shade and parked far from the entrance.

So I am hoping for smooth roads ahead. Both Vinny and I will hold on as long as possible.


Written by commuterchroniclesdbh

April 3, 2012 at 2:42 pm

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