September 30, 2005


Meet Eloise - my 2002 Mini Cooper S
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

Here we are... me and Eloise. Well, and Reboot, of course.

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Eloise is a 2002 electric blue Mini Cooper S. She only has 23,000 miles on her. As you can see, she's an adult, but has so far taken the gentler side of life. I think it's time for her to show the world what she can do... there's definately a party girl in there.

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She's cute in a geeky, saddle-shoes sort of way. However, don't let the light-blue exterior fool you. Once you get behind the wheel and drive - there's SO much more going on behind the scenes and this girl needs to and should be taken seriously.

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I think me and Eloise will be able to bring out the best in each other. Or maybe we already have?

I got to do my first "Mini wave" today. Matt and I saw the navy blue little guy zipping around town a few times this morning while we were doing errands. On the way home, there he was, a few cars ahead. We caught up, and zipped by and waved. He was already giving us the "thumbs up" as we drove past.

There's an Ocean State Mini club, and a few other local regional clubs. There's hardly a weekend where there isn't some sort of Mini rally going on. They get together, go for a nice drive, and usually end up having a picnic lunch somewhere and visiting a tourist spot.

How wonderful just to get out of the house and doing something fun with new people... I just can't wait. It just keeps getting better and better!

Oh, here's something funny, pointed out by Cindy.

Here's Cindy and Nate's 2002 mini Cooper standing next to MY 2002 Mini Cooper.

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My 2002 Mini Cooper requires oil changes every 6k-10k miles or so. Cindy and Nate's 2002 mini Cooper requires changes also, though a little more frequently than mine.

So anyway, hopefully you'll be hearing more about some "Mini Adventures".

September 23, 2005


The automobile(s) saga ends with some new additions.
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

Yes, that's right. Additions. Two. As in, Matt traded his not-running-$3k worth of repairs needed Saturn. And, I traded in my lemon-no air conditioning-barely running-worth less than Matt's car Pontiac.

Here's the story. And it was meant to be.

Saturn of Warwick is, IMHO, the best car dealership I've ever been to. The salespeople are friendly, and salaried. They don't work on commission. They have a great selection of non-Saturn cars. You can even purchase 100,000 mile warranties on any used car. As far as Matt and I were concernced, there wasn't anywhere else we were going to buy a new car.

Anyway, on their website, we found a 2004 Mazda 3 with low mileage. It looked perfect, so we called. The car was in their Boston dealership, but that was no problem. Saturn of Warwick bought it, and sent it down to Rhode Island specifically for Matt to drive on Saturday. Seeing pictures, and reading the stats, both Matt and I had a really good feeling about the car.

Saturday came, and we showed up at Saturn, met the salesman Matt had been talking to all week on the phone, and walked to see the car. Because the car was there specifically for Matt, Bob (the salesman) didn't want anyone else to stumble upon it, and parked it in its own small lot around the dealership.

The Mazda 3 was beautiful. 4-door, and a nice silver/grey color. It's a really sporty looking car. It just screamed "Matt!" It also had a factory installed 6-disc internal changer, and a red-colored racing interior. Drove beautifully, we knew it was going to be Matt's.

A bright yellow Mitsubishi Lancer was there also for him to look at. The color definately put Matt off, but driving it put him off even more. It had that boxy-sedan feel to it, even as a 5-speed manual.

Here's the thing. Way back, in the farthest corners of the Saturn lot, yet 2 cars away from the Mazda, was a 2002 light blue Mini Cooper S (6-speed manual), with 23,000 miles on it. I went and peeked in the windows, but I didn't say anything - this was Matt's day.

Matt asked Bob if we could drive the Mini. He looked at me and said, "This car is YOU!" I drove it, and it was amazing. Again, Matt, being so great, said that we would do what we had to to get me in that car.

To make a short story long, in one of the more crazy things that Matt and I have ever done, two days later we left the Pontiac at Saturn.

Matt drove his Mazda 3 home, and I drove my Mini Cooper S home.
I'm sure Matt will blog about the details of his new baby. And I'll introduce you all to Eloise.

September 12, 2005


When it rains, it pours...
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

So much to blog about... so little intravenous chocolate.

The blog-backup begins by including our quick getaway last weekend to visit Matt's parents in their new house in Florida. Since we flew to Tampa, and Joe and Shirley live in Tampa, of course we needed to stop in and see them! We had an awesome time with them, and even managed to go to Busch Gardens with Joe and their son, Ben!

Since we were told that we were their first "real" guests in their homes, I brought down a little beach chair ornament that said "Rhode Island" on it for the guest room. I told them they must start a tradition - anyone visiting the Littons must bring a tchotchke of some sort from where they are originally from.

So, everyone, note to self: Visiting the Littons? Bring a treat from your hometown for the guest room.

So that was a blast, and hopefully we can get the Littons (and anyone else that would like to come visit) up here in RI. It's autumn in New England, and there's no better time!

Saturday brought my car not starting. One minute it was fine, the next minute it wouldn't start. Thinking it was the battery (which was wierd, as nothing was left on), we pushed it into the street, popped the clutch, and let the car run and recharge for a long time. It still wouldn't start.

On the way home from bringing my car to the garage last night, Matt's car decided it wanted some attention, too, and decided to overheat. I mean, really overheat. And the heat itself decided to break, blowing only cold air in, so we couldn't even draw any heat into the car from the engine.

It limped to the repair shop (different than mine), and mom the hero picked us up and drove us home.

We came to find out this morning that Matt's car is basically toaster-caked: the head gasket is destroyed, along with a cracked something-or-other. Looks like a new car is in our future, and ASAP. Ugh. Did I mention that not seven days ago we just paid $500 for four brand new tires for the very same car?

I'm still waiting to hear on my car. We think it's the alternator, so that is worth fixing, at least.

We just called and cancelled our water filtration system we had being installed tomorrow... for those that don't know, we have well water that's always had problems, and it seemed a good time to upgrade our mini-treatment facility in the basement to the newer model. That's quite laughable now. We also have a vacation coming up, too. Matt and I go away every year on our anniversary. Thankfully it's paid for already, so it can't come soon enough (if we have to hitchike to the airport, dammit!).

The worst of it is, and this is why I'm hating myself at the moment, is that I really have no business complaining right now. At least we still have a house, our families, and our health, unlike so many others at the moment, who have nothing.


Though Scooter's not doing too well at the moment. He had a bad night last night. Keep him in your thoughts. He's an old guy (even for a ferret) and he's had a wonderful life.


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