Modern Sculpture, circa 1996 – Free to Good Home (comes with 4 winter tires)

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I’m not a fan of people who have gargantuan sculptures, fountains, or kitchy “art” in their front yards…ooh, I take that back…there is a house just down from ours, home to an elderly lady who is rather eccentric.  Her yard is crammed with statuary, ceramic animals, and YES a plastic pink flamingo that lights UP…I LOVE HER YARD  – it makes me smile every time I park in front of it.

Ok, let me rephrase…I don’t like people who have broken down cars in their front yards (along with various kitchen appliances, toilets, and old sofas).  When I was growing up, I crossed the street to avoid those houses whose yards were invariably unmowed and had mangy, snarling dogs tied up to a tree.  No, this wasn’t Appalachia but rural Montgomery County, Maryland and back then, houses like that still existed.  I’m sure they’ve all been supplanted by cookie-cutter subdvision homes now…

I digress…again (see previous post on “menopause brain”)

So, I live in a nice, clean neighbourhood.  For the most part, people’s houses are well-tended and the only time I see toilets sitting in the front yard is when the homeowners are renovating.  We keep our sofa on the inside of our house (although if the kids spill one more thing on it, I will have to put it out on trash day) so why, tell me good people, why do I have a rusting, broken down car in my yard????

My husband bought the car in 2000 when we lived in Deerfield, Illinois.  It was a damn good buy.  As recently as 2008, that car would start when my fancy, schmancy BMW X3 was frozen during a -40 cold snap in Calgary.  However, that car has sucked more money out of our bank account than either one of our kids; it was in such bad shape when we moved here that it had to be shipped out on a rail car (my husband feared I would push it off a cliff somewhere around Lake Superior – and I would have)

One week after we arrived in Toronto, I found myself asking a tow truck driver for the name of a good (cheap) mechanic in the Beach.  We soon gave up; we’ve leased another car and the Passat sits, dead, unreliable, rusting, probably with a happy family of raccoons living in its wheel wells.

My husband maintains that it costs us nothing to let it sit but I disagree.  It costs me in life-sapping aggravation.  It costs our family the respect and good will of our neighbours – who wants to see a rusting hulk of a car with weeds growing around it and raccoons chattering around inside?  I’ve noticed children crossing to the other side of the street lately and I know why.

The really annoying part?  While the Passat rots on our front parking pad, the car we have that functions (so far) often cannot find a parking spot on the street.  Like I said:  life sapping aggravation.  One day, my husband is going to come home from a long day at the office.  The parking pad will be empty except for the peanut shells and cantaloupe rinds that the raccoons have left behind.  I will stand, innocently, in the front door way and shrug my shoulders.  My husband will slowly pull up into the parking space.

It will take time but he’ll get used to it.  Maybe the Passat, if  the roof, the doors, and the seats were removed, would make some eccentric person a very large but very interesting…planter.

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