March 20, 2006


We got rid of the Contour yesterday. In the morning while we were out to church, I got a message on my cell phone from a woman asking about the car. I called them back that afternoon, letting them know that we'd be home for the rest of the day; they showed up around 3:30, and after a 15-minute visual inspection and test drive, the car was sold!

The buyers were a family — husband, wife, and son, out to find a replacement for the son's car, which was totalled in a freeway accident (rear-ended on the 405). Mysteriously, they came from Thousand Oaks, which is quite a haul from Anaheim (about seventy miles) — I asked the father if they'd spent the day looking at different cars, and he answered that no, they'd only had one other car on their list, but they knew as soon as they saw it that that car wouldn't be the car for them. More mysteriously, the son couldn't really drive a stick; dad did most of the test-driving, and the kid ground the gears horribly during the few minutes that he got behind the wheel. But whatever; heavenly providence delivered these people across the LA Basin to take this car off of our hands!

The son had received $2,700 from his insurance settlement on the totalled car, so that's what I agreed to sell the Contour for. (Down from our shoot-the-moon price of $3,500, but up from the original planned $2,600 that Shelby talked me out of.) They paid in cash, so now I feel like a drug dealer, what with my stack of crisp hundreds stashed away in a desk drawer.

Selling off the car is a huge relief. And selling it to a consortium of people with a real adult in charge was an even greater relief. After spending a few weeks fielding phone calls from nothing but stoners and flakes (unsurprisingly, people seriously considering an eight-year-old Ford for their daily transportation aren't the most reliable folks in the world), I was afraid that I'd go through a month or two of that before finally dumping the car on some charity for a $300 tax deduction. Thankfully, the dad was a snap-decision businessman type who knew what he wanted, came prepared (witness the stack of hundreds), and wasn't a stickler for maintenance paperwork (not that I didn't have the maintenance done, just that keeping track of all of our oil-change receipts wasn't our highest priority during three moves and twice packing everything into storage to go to Germany).

They haven't called me back to complain about the car yet, so I guess that the sale actually took. Hallelujah!

Posted by Kevin at March 20, 2006 12:11 PM
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