Published in the Rains County Leader on April 7, 2022:
We’ve had our “new” car for almost five years, and I still really like it. It has all the bells and whistles including heated and cooled seats on both the driver’s and passenger’s side. (In the Pontiac, only the driver’s seat was heated, and David took delight in describing how warm and toasty he was while I shivered on my side of the car.) The Kia has a sun roof that extends all the way to the back seat, but we rarely used it because, well, because it lets the sun in – but it’s still nice to know it’s there. The spacious trunk is perfect when I get carried away at Brookshire’s or Walmart, and my paraphernalia fits nicely when I pack up for a vendor event.
The car is also outfitted with all kinds of electronics and more memory than David and I put together. There are several buttons for adjusting the driver’s seat and mirrors, and at the touch of one of these buttons, the car automatically returns to the preferences of Driver 1 or Driver 2. Like a sea-going vessel, I tend to think of the car in terms “she” and “her,” probably because the voice on the GPS is feminine and because she has an attitude. She’s pretty proud of her abilities and gets a bit sassy from time to time. She tells on me when I forget to fasten my seat belt, which is often, and she sounds an alarm if I try to get out of the car without turning off the engine. She also screeches loudly if I try to lock the door with the key fob still inside. I’m grateful for this one, but I do wish she’d be a bit more discreet.
Her dashboard features the normal gauges with a few extra warning lights thrown in just to show off. And as if TVs, computers, electronic tablets, and smart phones weren’t enough electronic input in our lives, she sports her own screen where she gives visual and audio directions to our chosen destination and tells us the name, artist, and release date of whatever oldie we’re currently listening to on SiriusXM. She also gives reminders and advice on car maintenance from time to time. David has read the two-volume owner’s manual from cover to cover and knows what all these gadgets and messages signify, but even he was taken aback one day last week when she flashed an ominous message across the screen:(more…)