We sold our car today. To me more precise, I sold the car. I researched, I haggled, I struck a deal, then I drove down to the bank with the title in hand and turned over the keys. My first act as a truly pedestrian New Yorker? I bummed a ride home from the new owner.
I was only using the car to take Ellie to the park – a two-mile round trip. There’s not a doubt in my mind this was the right thing to do, but I felt small waves of panic and loss leading up to the sale. I kept thinking, “But you wanted this car so bad for so long.” I wanted a Fit when it was still called the Jazz – I wanted to zip around and park in tiny places, I wanted to lay those seats down and haul things. I got the car during what I like to think of as The Best Week Ever, a roughly seven day period in 2009 when everything in the world was good and my luck was beyond compare.
I think what bothers me is the shifting nature of desire. It isn’t just that the things I had then–house, car, job, friends–are all so different now. It’s that I wanted things then that I don’t want now. On some level, I feel as if selling the car is an act of ingratitude to the universe – “Look how fickle I am! You give me everything I want and I sell it to a nice couple from Nebraska before the warranty expires!” I know that needs change, life is change. To refuse new gifts would be the true sign of ingratitude. But I still feel bad. Obviously this isn’t about the car.