I have always driven a beater. I’m okay with this. They have always been free to me and each one has taught me more about cars than I ever thought I would know.
My grandma gave me my first car when I was only 15. She lost her vision and couldn’t drive anymore. This was a great little old car and lasted me about 4 years until it started to go. One day on my way home from the mall the car started smoking, so obviously I freaked out. Turns out that it was out of coolant so it was over-heating. The leak was in a stop that couldn’t easily be fixed, so instead I continued to drive the car with the leak and just watched the temperature gauge and the coolant level. I kept a jug of coolant in my car and filled it up whenever it needed some. This new found knowledge would come in very handy a few years later when my friend’s car started over heating. She had no idea what was going on but my first instinct was to check the coolant. It was bone dry! Luckily for her it was a easy fix and wasn’t much of a problem after that.
My second car was the most beat-up of all the cars that I’ve had. It was as old as me and you could tell by the rust alone. The car drove pretty well by the ignition key was broken, so I had to leave the key in all the time. Because of this I had a separate key to unlock the doors. By owning this car, I became very familiar with AAA. I would constantly forget the lock key in the car and lock the doors. I think by the end of owning that car, AAA knew what I was calling for as soon as I told them my name.
Which brings us to the car that I am currently driving. Both of my previous cars had things go wrong in the all the time, so now I am hyper-sensitive to ever little sound that seems off. For the past few weeks my car has been making strange noises when I turn the steering wheel. It wasn’t happening all the time, so I wasn’t too worried about it. Then this morning the noise got worse. I was nervous about it but continued to drive anyway. When I left for work though, I knew something was actually wrong. I could see more fluid then usual on the driveway. Luckily its basically a straight shot to work, but by the time I made the first out of only two turns that I make, I had no power steering.
The only good thing about this car story is that my friend in college (who’s car ran out of coolant!) had never had power steering in her car. It simply came without it. So I have driven a car without power steering many times. I knew exactly what was wrong with my car. Luckily its just a small leak, but it isn’t easy to get to and I can’t drive it until its fixed (some pump will keep running or something?).
I guess the whole point of this long post is that driving a beater car is not necessarily the worst thing in the world. They may not look the prettiest, but if they can get you from point A to point B its basically serving its purpose. I am glad that I have driven not the greatest cars my whole life because I truly feel like it has taught me so much about cars. I know enough to check for certain things. I know when something doesn’t seem right and have the opportunity to fix it before it gets a lot worse. (Plus I don’t have a car payment so that’s awesome!)
Now onto the food! For dinner tonight I made Chicken Parm Meatballs and they were delicious! Seriously, make this recipe right now. I found it on Pinterest and it comes from Tablespoon.
- 1 cup Panko
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 egg
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 6 fresh basil leaves, torn
- salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, combine Panko, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and olive oil. In a medium bowl, beat the egg. Then combine with ground chicken, red pepper, onion, garlic, basil and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Coat a muffin tin with cooking spray. Divide chicken mixture into 12 equal parts and put into muffin tin. Bury a piece of mozzarella into each meatball. Cover with Panko mixture. Bake for about 30 minutes, until the Panko is golden. Serve over pasta.