At the end of a crazy weekend of trying to finish up my 18-page paper and having pretty much zero food in the house (at least, nothing that could be made into a meal, as well as zero fresh fruits and veggies, and very few frozen ones) Shane and I needed to go to the grocery store. It was desperate. I got so hungry that I actually snarled at Shane when he didn't seem to feel any urgency about getting to the store. (I believe I said something along the lines of, "We need to go now because your pregnant wife is *freaking* hungry but you think it's fine to sit there playing your stupid-ass iPod games!")
We knew that having cupboards so bare meant too many groceries to bring home by bike. Way too many. I also wanted to get some dirt to (finally) start my plants. So, we called around to see if we could borrow a vehicle and, at the same time, I decided to call the local car dealership we've been checking up on infrequently, hoping they'll have the car we want.
Well, they did. So after we borrowed the car from our friends (and she fed me a little bit) we went straight to the dealership. We test drove a car and discovered that we really liked it. Good safety ratings, decent mileage, good reliability ratings (both online and from a friend who knows Subarus), and big enough to take a kid and a dog on a road trip, or camping, or whatever. I even checked to be sure it has the straps for a car seat, which it does. Best of all, it's used! We were not looking forward to having to buy a new car, which was becoming more and more of a possibility as Shane's work date draws nearer. But it's fine now, we bought this one. And it was *cheap* enough (ha!) that we can pay for it outright, so they (surprisingly, considering that it was pretty much at the Blue Book recommended price) knocked a couple hundred dollars off for us. Don't get me wrong, it's still hellishly expensive. But not as bad as a new car, which we would have had to finance a bit of.
What did we buy? A 2010 Subaru Impreza Sport. We don't actually have it yet, since we need to pay for it first (and banks aren't open on Sundays) so we'll go get it tomorrow. Also, we need to get insurance as well.
When we were waiting for the salesman to draw up papers and such we discussed some ground rules for the car. We're both worried that having a car will make us more inclined to be lazy. So, rules. No driving to the Pub, which Shane is really bad about wanting to do, since it's only a 15 minute walk. No driving to friends who are close by, which I can be bad about when I know it's going to be a very late night. No making small random trips to the grocery store, make a list instead and go no more than once a week. (And bike whenever possible.) Generally it comes down to no driving anywhere when we can bike or walk instead. We want to keep our car use down about as low as it's been when we've been forced to borrow cars to drive anywhere. Are we the only people ever to buy a car and immediately start planning how to not use it?
My MIL already freaked out that I won't have access to the car for most of the summer. Shane needs to take it to work, 2 weeks at a time, so I'll continue biking and, if necessary, grabbing rides from friends. I'll be just fine. But we'll have reliable transportation when Baby gets here and for running errands too big/far to do by bike.
$500 deposit on the car, (almost) $300 grocery trip later, we have food and a car but our bank account is hurting. Oh well.
I did manage to finish that paper. Tonight I get to turn it in and give my presentation, then I'm done for the semester. Good thing, too, since I'm mentally done in as well. Wednesday I should be able to relax a bit, but until then my time is scheduled to maximum capacity.