A few weeks back, I hit a huge milestone with the longest relationship I’ve had so far: Elsie Marie Car-ma and I have been together for over 5 years, and we finally hit our 30,000 mile mark. After 5 years and 4 months, we hit the big 3-0-0-0-0!
Many people talk about their first car with fond memories. For me, Elsie is more than that. Elsie has seen me through some of the best (and worst) times of my life. She was with me when I was working my first job at the local grocery store. She drove me, my brother, and his girlfriend to school every day my senior year. She carried me through my Grandpa’s death, and she was the vessel in which I drove my Grandpa’s relatives to the store in the nights surrounding his funeral service. Late nights driving home from work Senior Year gave me the opportunity to think, uninterrupted, and attempt to wrap my mind around my petty teenage problems, the death of my beloved Buster (Grandpa), and try to accept my sexuality.
Five years have passed since my senior year, and dear ol’ Elsie has been through a lot: a few accidents, Grandpa’s death, the start of college, coming to terms with my sexuality, 4 different jobs, becoming a RA, one relationship, quite a few day trips, a roadtrip to Massachusetts with my poefy, a scattered assortment of first (and last) dates, late night Wawa adventures, acceptance into Grad School, a friend’s death, zebra print seat covers, graduating my undergrad, the start of my teaching career, an assortment of musical obsessions ranging from hard rock to musicals to Taylor Swift to Melissa Etheridge, and so much more.
Elsie has been a constant in my life. Even after being in a few fender-benders with her, she’s come through them. She’s a huge part of my life, and an odd source of comfort when the going gets tough. Aimlessly driving to clear my head has saved me from going crazy so many times, and I am eternally grateful for Elsie Marie Car-ma.
I know Elsie is getting up there. She’s five years old, and little things are starting to go. the driver’s window leaks when it rains. My radio sometimes shuts off on its own. There’s a certain jiggle I have to do when Elsie is overheated and I’m trying to take the key out of her. Elsie is starting to go through what I’ve been calling car menopause, and it terrifies me. I know she won’t last forever, but the thought of not having her in another 10 years scares me. Elsie is reliable, sharp, quirky, simple, and everything I could ever ask for in a relationship. I trust her to support me through no matter what life throws at me, and I’m so, so grateful for her.
Here’s to you, Elsie Marie Car-ma, and the next 30,000 miles!
One of our first photos together. <3