The Adventure – Buying a New Van for my upcoming 100th Monthly Adventure!
The only way I envisioned crossing Canada on a budget was to buy a van with Stow n Go capabilities – that way, I could transform the inside into an RV, complete with storage, bed, and kitchen.
Too Good to Be True
My first foray out into the world of purchasing a Van led me to go check out a used 2006 Dodge Caravan for $2,950.
Too good to be true, you wonder?
Yeah, you got that right. While taking the van to get an assessment at Knight Bridge Service, it ran out of gas, less than a kilometre away from sales lot.
I got rescued 30 minutes later, but even with the gas tank happy, the van still wouldn’t start. The battery died and we couldn’t open the hood because the handle was missing.
Finally, after an hour and a half of trying to get to see the mechanics, I arrived, and within seconds, the hood popped open and laughter ensued. Not only was it missing a dipstick for the oil and had huge rusty holes on the bottom, the list of ‘serious’ problems far outweighed the minor. I wasn’t even allowed to offer the dealership $500.
It was so sad, it looked really nice…but something about judging a book by it’s cover comes to mind right about now…but I guess in reverse.
The Carter Dealership
This led me to a dealership that has a great reputation, the Carter Dodge Chrysler Jeep Dealership.
My sales lady, Joanie Von Schribar, and financial officer, Al Chin, made this whole process seem like a dream come true.
Seriously, they did.
They bent over backwards to help me get a great vehicle. They even let me take the van to Knight Bridge Service for an assessment. And, after a few minor recommendations, Joanie took the van back to get a few things fixed or upgraded. And finally, the van was mine, all mine!
It feels weird though.
I’m not used to being so high up or being in something so weirdly immaculate.
But I am excited because I know that, within a few months time, this van is going to become my best friend, my companion, my partner-in-crime. We are not only going off on my grandest adventure of all – my 100th Monthly Adventure – but we are going to explore everything together.
And I love the feeling of freedom it’s going to give me.
Now, my friend’s are calling it my ‘Soccer Mom Van,’ but just watch me. I’m going to be able to go do things, crazy things, and at a moment’s notice. And I’ll be able to sleep anywhere. And make a cuppa tea whenever I want.
All that’s missing is the fireplace.
It’s All About My Dad
Now…I’m not saying my dad is a weirdo or anything, but when it came to getting insurance on my new adventure van, I asked this kind gentleman, insurance broker Johnny LeClair from Hub International, for a very special favour.
You see, my dad has a weird predilection for the number 38.
At every opportunity, he sees fit to tell everyone about every random 38 he sees. It’s like the Gods are bestowing some special honour on him every time he sees one.
So, in his honour, and because he’s coming with me on my 100th Adventure across the country, I got plates with the number 38 in them.
He has NO IDEA that I did this, but, depending on what comes first…him reading this story or when he first lays eyes on the van…he is going to be SO HAPPY.
Simple pleasures, my friends. It doesn’t take much.
Throw a good cuppa tea in my hands and I will purr like a kitten for hours. Other people…they just need the number 38.
© Monthly Adventure, Patricia Taylor, February 2016