This also happened.

December 20, 2015

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I flew up to Ohio and drove this back 1200 miles.

Was searching for 5 weeks. The ONLY 02 Platinum Silver Metallic Manual transmission Forester for sale in America within my budget. Drove it back last Friday-Saturday.

Yes, I have plans for it.

 

THE OTE EXPERIENCE: WORST TRIP IDEA EVER, BEST CASE SCENARO

I ended up flying out of Love Field (DAL) around 9:10a because plane delays (8:50 was the scheduled).  Got in the air and had turbulence forever.  By the time the drinks got to us, it was already time to land.  Never got my Dr. Pepper.  Landed in Tampa (TPA) around 14:25 (15:25 local time), shuffled around trying to find an outlet to charge phone (NEXUS 5 BATTERY D:< ) before the plane started boarding.  Barely got a charge before it did.

We left Tampa for Canton/Akron (CAK) and landed around 17:55, at which point the real journey began.  I made use of Uber to get to my destination.  I felt bad for it, but was informed that Uber drivers kind of get screwed regardless when it comes to these things.  Did you know that an Uber driver isn’t told what the destination is until after they hit accept, and there was one instance of someone being driven cross country?  Not a fan of that, but the lady that picked me up was sweet enough…even if she didn’t really follow her phone directions well.

We showed up around 8pm to the guy’s shop/house after being lost on some back roads as it started to snow.  He came outside with 5 of his…I guess sons…?  The hair on my neck started to send off warning signals, but I pressed on.  He let me start the car and showed me around it.  I immediately opened the radiator cap to check the coolant level/color, and everything checked out.  He noted it was a bit strange, as well as how strange it was that someone from as far away as I was had come to look at a “common” car.  I noted a few more things wrong with it and for the first time actually got to LOOK at the car in non-grainy craigslist format.  There was more rust than I was led to believe, the gauge cluster only had one working backlight, and it had a check engine light that he said “was probably the gas cap from before”.  The answer was sketch city, and I had a feeling there was more wrong with the car than he was telling me.  Regardless, it was running good and was responsive.  It was a gorgeous car in my eyes.

I went through with buying it, a bit wary at first since there were 6 people surrounding me as I was reaching in my coat for the money.  He took the money and counted it, I signed off on the title and BoS, we shook hands, and the Uber driver and I went off back to civilization.

Around this time, it was 9pm, and I had 1200 miles+ ahead of me.  The driver and I pulled up to a gas station to refill.  I filled mine up and went to fill hers up…to discover my card wasn’t working.  Went inside, card gets declined.  Called up Wells Fargo at 21:30 and had them verify the charges with me and got my card unlocked.  I gassed her car up (“Hey, can you put premium in it instead? I like to use the better gas for my car” Lady, it’s a nonturbo with a low compression ratio.  You don’t need it since you actually need a faster burn speed, but whatever.) Her gas clicked off, I hung it back up, and followed her back to the highway.

We get to the highway and go our separate ways, “Ann” (Twintail calls the voice on our phones Ann, short for Android I suppose) starts to direct me, and I get about 30 miles down the highway before the sudden pangs of hunger hit me.  It’s about 22:15 at this point.  I spot a Wendy’s and pull over.  Fortunately since it was Friday, their dining room was open later, and I got to eat inside.  I picked a window closest to the car and ended up sitting there staring at it for a while.  It finally hit me that I finally had a Subaru again.

I finish eating after about 45 minutes and head back to the car, grabbing a refill real quick.  I roll in and click the key to on, not starting it immediately.  It occurred to me that I hadn’t had any music playing, so I break out my cluster of CDs I burnt for the trip and load up the first 6 of the 7 I made.

  1. Bounce: Connected
  2. Trois Rouge
  3. Trois Bleu
  4. Trois Noir
  5. 霊知の太陽信仰 (Reiichi no Taiyo Shinko/Solar Sect of Mystic Wisdom)
  6. 緑眼のジェラシー (Midori mi no Jerushi/Green-Eyed Jealousy)
  7. 71:10 (1 hour, 11 minutes, 10 seconds of True Administrator…only) (CD was on standby)

I clicked to CD 1 while backing out, then put it into first gear. The first note hit and I immediately busted out in tears, as I’m doing right now typing this while it plays.

This song is the only song that reminds me so strongly of my first Subaru.  This song WAS my first Subaru.  My first Subaru is WHY I got this second Subaru.

Said Subaru

The moment was pure bliss.  It’s hard to describe, but for a few moments at a time, I felt like I was human and was once again a part of the world.

I get a call from parents saying they’re worried about me, and they arrange for me to stay at a hotel, me paying half of it.  I decided to agree because quite frankly, I was pretty dead tired, it was 28 degrees fahrenheit outside, I didn’t want to actually push to see how my old endurance driving ability had fared over the years.  About 3 hours after I left Wendy’s, I hit a pretty nasty bump in the road and one of the gauge cluster lights came back on.  This excited me, but then I started smelling a foul odor…one I wasn’t familiar with, but it was sweet smelling.  I pull my phone out and shone the light on the cluster to discover my coolant gauge had decided it was high time to kiss the 2/3rd hatch mark.  My car was threatening to overheat.

I pulled over immediately, screaming inside my head about how bad this situation was.  I throw the hood open and immediately start scanning for leaks.  There was one, but it was from the radiator cap.  I wasn’t sure if it was the same drip from before when I checked it, or if it was new, but everything seemed to not be leaking.  The coolant reservoir had definitely filled up though and was damn close to overflowing, but there was still space.  I gritted my teeth, shut the hood, and got back in the car.  I didn’t have a choice except to see what would happen.  I was back on the highway within moments.

Having no gauge lights made this whole ordeal even worse, as I had to hold my phone with the flashlight on against the steering wheel to monitor the coolant.  For an hour and a half, I watched it as it cycled up close to the 2/3rd mark, then would come back down, stay for 10 minutes, and do it all over again, each time growing closer to going over that hatch mark.  I didn’t know what I would do, being in the middle of nowhere Ohio, 900+ miles away from anyone I knew that could help, and it being 2 in the morning.  I was completely screwed if the car decided to tank.

It didn’t.

Around 2:55, I pulled into the hotel we discussed prior.  I snap a few pictures, then got all settled in and promptly crashed.

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The best shot from those 4

Around 10, I woke up.  I showered, cleaned up my stuff, and checked out.  Found a Subway about 30 minutes into the drive and stopped there for an hour.  Took my bag of chips and left there about 11ish.

The rest of the trip was me snapping photos of THE GREAT AMERICAN MIDWEST and some moments of twitter, but there was nothing particularly noteworthy for that…remaining 11 hours of the trip.  I’ll upload the photos in another post as they’re on my phone still, but as anti-climatic as it is, that’s the whole story of my new Subaru.

Sight unseen, bought a next day plane ticket to go buy a questionable 2002 car who’s owner was sketchier than a court room drawing, and drove it back the entire way home to Texas.  A 1200+ mile trip in a car with 230,000 miles.

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