I love these Bradford Pear trees, even though there are those who say they smell like fish.

I have really loved being the owner and driver of a swanky Mercedes Benz for the past few years. I bought the car used from the dealership in Charlotte when I discovered that I could buy  this car for the same price as the used Toyota truck I had been searching for. Of course the car was quite old but it had been driven hardly at all by a little old lady in Charlotte. It looked brand new when I saw it at the dealership, and I burst into tears when the salesman told me I could afford it. It had every added feature one could ask for in a Mercedes, and many I couldn’t figure out how to use. Once when we were driving to Greenville in a fierce downpour, an icon appeared on the screen of a steaming hot mug. I looked it up in the handbook and learned that because we had been driving somewhat irrradically, we should stop for coffee. The car was a yummy dark brown color and looked expensive. It’s weird how driving around in that car made me feel like a queen. I sat up straighter (on the pillow I needed to get tall enough to see over the dashboard) and felt like giving the Queen’s Wave when I saw friends on the street. People in Biltmore Forest waved at me as I drove by, 

Colorful Mela lamps and shades

The car was a big SUV of the 550 series and it required high test gas and lots of TLC. As someone told me recently, being able to afford a German car is not the same thing as being able to afford to maintain it. I was spending one hundred dollars each week for gas, and as I drove back and forth to Asheville I could watch the gas meter falling. Recently, the car developed a coolant leak, and we had to spend three thousand dollars to fix that, as the engine had to be removed from the car to do the repair, and of course the parts came from Germany, which added to their cost. So last week it started leaking again, and I was looking at another expensive repair. I brought the car to the repair shop for routine maintenance, and that was almost $400. They told me that I needed new brakes and new tires. Visions of dollar signs danced in my head. I loved that car like a child, but I knew I had to say goodbye. 

Antique yellow mirror, just arrived.

Even though I felt like a queen in the Mercedes, I am not descended from royalty, and it didn’t really fit with my image as a former Hippie, bohemian, Quaker simple-liver. Even my daughter-in-law was stunned when she saw that I was driving this extravagant car. ‘You are driving a Mercedes??” Melissa said when I pointed it out to her. “You’re pulling my leg, aren’t you?”

It was time to let it go and get a car that fit my image as well as my size. Even on the pillow, I couldn’t see over the dashboard in the Mercedes and had a hard time parking. I have bought four cars from Fred Anderson Toyota and feel comfortable there. So Ron and I cleaned up the Mercedes and took it to its new home there. The salesman was very nice, and he asked me what I wanted. I told him I was looking or a newish Rav-4. I didn’t care about color and had few requirements except a back-up camera, which he told me came with most cars nowadays. 

Stone lamp base with pretty shade

Matt, the salesman, left us to check the inventory and came back with the perfect car. He lead with, “It’s a pretty color, midnight blue.” I was sold. Then he told us it was a 2021 with only 11.000 miles on it. We drove it and I didn’t need the pillow to see over the dashboard. It felt manageable for me at my size and I told Matt we would take it. Matt said it was the easiest sale he ever made…

We waved goodbye to the Mercedes and rode off in the little Toyota, And even after a couple of trips into Asheville, the gas gauge is still on full! I’m already saving money.  

We have linen clothes in a variety of colors