Carless? “Thanks” Harvey


R.I.P. sweet Lily-car. I’ll miss you.

Lily was a good car. She got me around town. We took road trips together. She was the first car I bought all by myself. She was mine for 11 of her 13 years of life. She survived several floods. Not Hurricane Harvey. Harvey killed Lily.

I drove her to the store on Saturday during a lull in the hurricane, and I knew something was wrong. Lily was shimmying and flashing lights at me; nevertheless, I had hope that she would pull through. I began to have doubts; I watched the flood waters rise from the street, as gallons of water continuously gushed from the roof onto her hood. Water would still have to come up about six more inches for my house to be in danger, but oh, my sweet Lily! In true Texas fashion, I walked into the house and took a shot of bourbon- it’s not like I was driving anywhere!

After the skies cleared and the sun came out, I tried to start my car. I have never heard such an awful noise from a machine! Lily was not starting. By the time the insurance adjuster came, she had begun to mold. Even with the molding and the not starting, I am still having a hard time saying goodbye to my car- which is still in my driveway, by the way. I feel like I may need a funeral for her.

I am so lucky! Hurricane Harvey has devastated so many people I know. I really have lost so little, but still, I was not prepared for this at all. I have a few other hurricane issues which need to be resolved, but the car is an issue. I shopped for Lily for over six months. She was exactly the vehicle I wanted, and I accidentally got a really good deal. Right now, I have no idea what I want, and I probably can’t afford it, even with my insurance payout.

I know this sounds a little bit crazy, but I kind of want to be carless for a little while. If you know anything about Houston, that is not an easy proposition. We are a “car city.” Our public transportation is difficult unless you are going somewhere directly on a bus line. Bike lanes- you’re kidding, right? That is just extra space for our big ole’ trucks. Walking? We live in a swamp and our sidewalks- well, where there are sidewalks- are in disrepair.

I would be crazy to go carless for a while, right? But, people do it… they have to… and I am a little bit crazy…