Monday, June 16, 2008


I'm happy to announce that we got another van last weekend!

After two weeks of no vehicle of our own we are now wheeled!

I found a nice 1999 Chevy Venture on a local classified site for the low price of $3000 and immediately called to inquire. The only problem was that the van was located in Dauphin, Manitoba which is nearly two hours away from here. I asked the seller the standard questions about the van and then said that I would like to drive it.

Since his ad mentioned that he would deliver I asked if he would bring it to Brandon. He said he would have no problem driving it down if he could be sure he was going to sell it. I told him that if he was being honest and there was truly nothing wrong with the van that he would almost certainly sell it. However if I drove it and noticed something wrong I would not be buying it. So really it all came down to his confidence in the quality of the van.

He said that he could bring it down on Saturday for me to check it out. I asked him how he would like payment and he said he'd like cash or a certified check (draft check). No problem, said I, knowing that I had just deposited a $5000 check on Monday which was going to be cleared that very day.

I should really know by now that whenever I think 'No Problem' that it means there will definitely be a problem.

I went down to the bank to get a draft check and was told by the teller that the check I'd deposited still hadn't cleared and it wasn't going to clear until the next Wednesday. He told me that I could access $300 only. That Helps!!

I went back to work and called the guy selling the van. I explained my situation and asked him if that would be a problem for him. Apparently he'd gotten another call 15 minutes after talking to me from another guy who was desperate to buy the van. He would prefer to sell it this weekend either way. He then said that if I could get him a deposit and write a post dated check that he would proceed with selling the van to me instead of the other buyer.

"How much of a deposit do you need?" I asked.


"OK, Let me make some calls and get back to you." A thousand bucks? Where can I get a thousand bucks by tomorrow?

In a fit of panic a sent an email to my Mom to see if she could help me with this situation. After I sent the email I had a bit of time to settle down and I started to think more clearly. I realized that my best option was to see if I could get my paycheck a week early. The only problem with that is the person who writes the checks was in Winnipeg all day and I wasn't sure if she was going to be back in time.

I gave her a call and explained my situation and she agreed to give me my check early,but she wasn't going to be back before the banks closed. I didn't think this was going to be a problem, but then again I seem to be able to create problems where none would normally exist.

Anyway I called the seller and told him that I was good to go with the deposit and he said he would be here the next day.

I got my check and deposited it and pulled out my daily limit of $500 from the ATM. I would get the other $500 the next day after Buddy called to say he was on his way.

Wouldn't it be a bitch if there was something wrong with the van and I was going through all this stress for nothing? Sound about right for my luck!

I waited all morning for Buddy to call and was starting to worry that he might have sold it to the other guy after all. At lunch time I called him and was reassured that he was still coming. Great! Once he called I would run to the bank and be back with plenty of time.

About 20 minutes later he called and informed me that he was already IN Brandon and that he was going to be by in about 15 minutes! Hell! That doesn't give me enough time to run to the bank and back! Not only that but Jules was going to be off work and home in about 25 minutes and I would really prefer not to have the kids along for the ride. My only hope was that he would be a little longer than he thought.

Nope! He was actually early. About 5 minutes! Looks like my test drive is going to be done with all 3 kids in the van and will include a stop at the bank.

All my fears about the van were laid to rest when I drove it. Everything seemed to work well. The steering was nice and tight, the transmission felt solid and there were no knocking sounds coming from the motor. The alignment was good and the brakes worked nicely. The whole time I was driving it the kids were 'Ooohing' and 'Aaahing' over the cup holders and the seat belts and other non-vital items.

Since it came with such nice cup holders I bought the van!

It is such a relief to have another vehicle! Not only does it clear up the stress of needing a van badly (it would have really made the camping trip we have planned in two weeks difficult), we also no longer have the daily stress of wondering when the van will die or if we will be getting home from wherever we happen to be going.

Now we just need to get the other eyesore out of our driveway. Anybody looking for a dead 1992 Plymouth Grand Voyager?? I hate that van!!


Heather said...

Congrats!! I just swapped my Cavalier with my mom's minivan, and I have to say I am really enjoying it. Mostly because it's an automatic, and after spending most of my adult life driving a manual, it's like a driving vacation!

MadWoman said...

Congrats to you on your hot new set of wheels. We have a horrible little monstrosity in the form of a Kia Rio station wagon and I am desperate to trade it in. Sadly, what the over zealous salesman did NOT tell me when I purchased it was that Kias lose their value faster than a hooker on meth.

I'm insanely jealous of you, and I may just have to sit and stare at the picture of your van for a while.