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Vic Biorseth, Sunday, April 25, 2021
Those of you who have been stopping by here for enough years might remember my old pickup truck, which I sold right here on this website. It had over 550,000 miles on it when I sold it, and it was still running; but it had a lot wrong with it.
What we replaced it with was a used Chevy Trailblazer 4X4 that I bought specifically to use to do courier/delivery work. The two rear seat rows folded down, and I could put some plywood over them to protect them, and that gave me a lot of cargo room, and plenty of room to lay in my 3-in-1 convertible hand dolly. But it was also our 'second car', and the 4X4 feature allowed me to get to some of my favorite fishing spots, which were way off road.
Well, now I wore that one out too. When the transmission began slipping and I took it to the mechanic, we got the bad news; I was out of business as a courier for awhile, because it couldn't be trusted to make it from point A to point B. We knew it had some problems we were just living with, but if it won't stay in gear, that's a show stopper.
At over 630,000 miles, it looked like it needed both an engine and a trannie rebuild, and some more front differential work, and a catalytic converter, and some old beligerent electrical problems to be resolved, etc., etc., etc. Dollar signs that were big enough to exceed the available cash that we could afford to buy another used vehicle with.
It turned out, on final inspection by Paul's Garage, that the only two things that had never been opened up for repairs were the rear differential and the transfer case, and both of those had over 631,000 miles on them, so guess what, sooner or later they would need work too.
So, for the better part of two weeks I was earning nothing. As the bills piled up, I was car shopping and dealer-visiting, test-driving, and taking the best candidate vehicle's to Paul's garage for another $111.00 inspection. This was going backwards, cash flow wise. But we weren't plunking down any money on anything that didn't pass the mechanical inspection at least as well as that old Trailblazer had.
Well, guess what, surprise, surprise, the one that passed the inspection the best was a minivan, of all things. It was a dealer that got us to look at one in the first place, although that wasn't the one we ultimately bought. (It didn't pass inspection.) But it made us look a whole lot closer at a type of vehicle we never even considered before this.
What we wound up plunking down cash for was a 2010 Chrysler Town and Country. It's front wheel drive rather than 4X4, but ... I'm not fishing so much any more for one thing; I didn't even buy a fishing license last year, or the year before for that matter. And the winters in southern Ohio are mild, as compared to Michigan; I never even had to use four wheel drive in the Trailblazer all last winter.
But here's the real selling factor, for me: the two back rows of seats fold down flat, below the floor. They go down into the floor. That gives me a huge amount of cargo space. I have laid a whole 4' by 8' sheet of plywood in there to protect the floor from any cargo I carry, and I can carry more of it than I could in the Trailblazer. Both side doors slide open, and the rear hatch opens quite high, making access to the whole bed quite convenient.
And it's low; a lot lower than the Trailblazer. I don't have to lift heavy things as high just to get them in there. It just makes my job easier.
Don't know about gas mileage yet; too soon to tell. It's got a little sideways mounted V6 with a 'transaxle' front wheel drive. It's peppy, has a nice tight turning radius and good visibility out of it all around, unless I'm really loaded up. It's a no frills, basic vehicle with no big optional bells and whistles, and that's exactly what we wanted. Good air, good heat, good outside mirrors; what else do I need? When we go somewhere in this car and Mark goes with us, all we do it take the plywood out, pop up one of the seats, and we're good to go.
So, this is me, in my new used delivery vehicle, making money again.
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Date: Tue Apr 27 13:07:22 2021
Location: San Carlos, CA/ USA
Good to read you are back on the road with good wheels.
I just want to thank you for the great articles you put out for us. Your points are focused and right on. Being a Catholic for 83 yrs. has had its ups and downs. There have been times that I have been in disagreement with Francis and pray the Church is not harmed more by his Marxist lean.
Anyway, God willing please drive carefully and keep up your excellent writing.
Date: Tue Apr 27 2021
From: Vic Biorseth
Thanks, Bill, I really appreciate that.
I'm right behind you in Catholic years, and in full agreement on our current Pope. I kind of sense a turning or a change coming, and am praying that it is an awakening, on a global scale, and that is is of the Holy Ghost.
We shall see. Whatever happens, all this is passing anyway, including even our physical bodies. As long as we can keep on picking up our daily crosses, and as long as our allegiance to our Lord Jesus never wavers, we may survive this old world yet, no matter what else happens.
Blessings, and I wish you faith, hope and charity.
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