|"Miss Ruby" enhanced digital photo|
I had to act quickly to find a new vehicle; after all, the insurance company of the guy who hit me wasn't going to let me drive that rental car forever. I have to admit, though, that the rental company was a little surprised when I returned it as I'd had it for three weeks. In their business that almost IS forever!
If I had had the luxury to truly research a new car and to visit umpteen dealerships and test drive a couple dozen cars, that would have been one thing. But I didn't have that luxury. So based on a few extenuating circumstances, I settled pretty quickly on a Ford Focus. Before I test drove one, I had decided the color I wanted was ruby red. I was tired of silver. All of my cars have been either white or silver, with the exception of one blue Mercury which I always hated so it doesn't count. When I look out my apartment window at the parking lot, all I see is silver, silver, silver. So, ruby red was a must.
I had had some previous experience with the Ford Focus via my son and was already impressed with the car, but when I test drove it, I was a little dubious about the shudder it makes in first gear. I looked at the salesman (who hails from Bulgaria) and said, I'd like this in a stick shift. Does it come that way? He looked at me dubiously (dubiousness reigns in this scenario) and he said of course, but I was the first woman who ever asked him that.
He was able to locate a ruby red, hatchback stick shift at a dealership less than 500 miles away, but he must have asked me 10 times if I was sure I wanted a stick shift. Oh, little man, don't trifle with me.
The day the car arrived, he got into the passenger seat while I drove us around the neighborhood. He was remarkably impressed. I love it when that happens.
Of course I had to name her Miss Ruby. It's more than just her color, though. One of the things I loved about my ex was his sense of play. Once, while vacationing in Bermuda with another couple, he decided we all needed redneck names and we should go around speaking in hillbilly accents. (I know that this is not politically correct, but suspend yourself for a bit, if you will.) The game was easy to play because all the guys were named Earl. Somehow, the wife of the other couple became Nadine and I was Ruby. That name stuck with me throughout all future redneck role playing scenarios. (I guess you had to be there.) For that reason, I have always related to that name. Well, always being since the year 2000.
Although Ruby and I will never make it to Bermuda (there's a moratorium on cars there) I know that we will have many adventures together.