Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Saying goodbye to an old friend.

No, there hasn't been a death in the family, or even in the barn yard. Chicken yard? I'm not sure of the right terminology. Nope, this week we sold my lovely white Kia Rio. We've had that car since we bought it new off the lot seven years ago with only fourteen miles on the odometer. My husband and I both felt a little sad when we saw the new owners drive away with it, because it's been such a good car, and has needed no major repairs--engine wise, that is. I suppose AC not working is a fairly major repair, if that sort of thing is important to you. And when the temperatures outside start nearing the hundred-degree mark, air conditioning does tend to be fairly important to most people.

No, we didn't decide to sell it rather than fix the air, though the no-AC issue did prevent me from taking the car out of town all last summer. Actually, we sold my fuel-efficient Kia, because it cost too much to fill up the gas tank. In other words, we're upgrading to natural gas. Of course, we don't have a car in mind, yet. But since the truck does cost less per mile to drive than the Kia did/does (about half at the current gas prices), and it has air conditioning, we'll make do for a few weeks until we find the right set of wheels. Hopefully I won't spend half of the car purchase money on landscaping trees and bushes before then. They're so darn tempting.

Anyway, last night as I was driving the ambulance, white knuckled, through a wind storm in rush-hour traffic, (They always have us in Provo and Salt Lake during rush hour. It's like a code the hospital staff all follow or something.), praying all the way, I began comparing what it's like to drive an ambulance, versus a compact car.

1) The Kia has a blind spot about the size of a gnat's eyebrow.

The ambulance has a blind spot at least a hundred feet long on each side--and you can't look over your shoulder to see what's in that space either.

2) The round trip to Primary Children's would have taken about nine gallons of gas in my Kia.

It took twenty-four gallons of gas to take the ambulance on the same trip.

3) The Kia has a boring horn, like most any car.

The ambulance has not only a horn, but two kinds of sirens--how cool is that?

4) The Kia has headlights and a dome light...I think there's one in the trunk as well. All of them are white.

The ambulance has all that plus flood lights on each side, loading lights where you take the gurney in and out, and the patient compartment has various light settings as well. That's not even counting all the cool flashing and rotating lights to let people know you're coming.

5) The Kia seats four adults er, kind of comfortably. If they're midgets.

The ambulance not only has six seat belts (even if leg room isn't all that much better than in the Kia), it also has a bed for someone to sleep in on the way home from late-night transfers, er, I mean, to put patients on--and you can raise their heads so they are sitting up if they want.

6) A Kia will turn on a quarter. I would say a dime, but with the price of gas, it costs more than that to turn. (So would my truck turn on twelve-and-a-half cents? Note to self, research this.)

The ambulance, hmm, it doesn't corner quite as well. And it doesn't stop very fast, either.

I could probably spend hours listing all of the cool things an ambulance has in it, that you could never fit a tenth of into a Kia--even if you had a midget driving it, but I have trees to plant that I bought with money from my car sale.

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