Snapshots tell so many stories, they take us back to a particular time and place. This snapshot is of me, my brother, and his friend as we were about to leave for school one day. In my car — my first car, my grandma’s car.
My First Car
My first car was nothing spectacular, but it was special to me. My grandmother had gotten it years before. I remembered riding in it when younger, and now I was driving it. A Chrysler LeBaron, it was the epitome of luxury, with velvety blue seats and upholstery inside of its white exterior. It was small, but a perfect fit. I drove that car for several years, until it was time to take a car to college and my parents decided it wasn’t “young” enough to handle the long distance driving. A fine car for around town — but not for across state.
My grandfather “sold” me the car for $1 after my grandmother had passed away. He had no use for it, and wanted it to stay in the family to be used. And that it was. Used and cared for. I was and still am grateful for that gift-that-was-not-technically-a-gift.
A bittersweet acquisition,
my grandma’s car
came to me through loss.
It was luxurious and fine,
my own chariot of the road.
My grandma’s car, now mine,
gave me freedom and responsibility.
Freedom to manage my own schedule
but with the expectation to
get my younger brother
safely to and from school.
We drove through town most days,
the highway being an unpredictable
route to get to school on time.
Rush hour traffic dominated
the roads during our daily drives.
In the early morning light one day,
my mother documented our departure.
We were ready to leave, and
reluctantly waited while she
took a snapshot of us — and my car.
Years later, the car is gone.
No longer in my possession,
I have only photographs to
remember my first car.
I no longer begrudge the delay
of a single snapshot.
Rather, I treasure this moment,
A captured memory from everyday.
The ordinary no longer,
but a piece of history.
My life history.
My grandma’s car
What was your first car like?
I’d love to hear memories of your first car, whether you had to save money to buy it yourself, or if a gracious family member passed an older car on to you.
What was it like? Did it drive well? Do you have a snapshot of you with your first car?
I’d love to hear your stories.