Today my husband and I bought a practical, sports utility vehicle (SUV). Of course, the vehicle will be useful, very much like the conservative white SUV it’s replacing. But dog gone it, I’m tired of driving boring, practical vehicles.
While my husband was signing the paperwork, I wandered into the car dealer’s showroom. Immediately I was attracted to small cars. If the car did not look practical, it caught my attention. My eyes fell upon a small, yellow convertible.
I fancied myself driving the yellow sports car – hair blowing in the breeze and looking absolutely fabulous. Then I caught sight of my watch, which brought me back to reality. In one hour I need to pick up my daughter and her friends from soccer practice. Where would they sit in this cute, two-seater car?
After my husband finished signing the paperwork, he found me looking wistfully at the yellow convertible.
“It’s cute,” he said with a smile. “But it’s too small.”
We left the dealership in our practical vehicles – him in the shiny, new SUV and me in the dull white SUV. One look at our vehicles, and you knew we’re members of the over 30 crowd.
Once again, I thought about the cute yellow car. Then I thought about my two children. The picture didn’t fit. I realized we’re not alone. Most of our friends drive SUVs. Maybe it’s part of growing up. You get married, have children and trade your cute car in for a SUV.
Then I realized the spaciousness of my practical SUV made our lives easier – even more fun. It safely transported seven giggling Brownies to various field trips, leaving behind remnants of spilled popcorn, candy wrappers, and torn papers. It delivered my daughters and their friends to many activities with their sleeping bags, soccer equipment, and bicycles. It even hauled two ferocious dinosaurs – three-foot paper mache creations my daughters made in an art class.
In the spring, the SUV was packed with cases of Girl Scout cookies. Later bright flowers crowded the back area, along with fertilizer, wood chips and flower pots. In the fall, it held bushels of apples and bundles of straw. And let’s not forget the poignant smell of carved pumpkins huddled together for a safe journey to decorate the school Halloween Party, or the mess the dried corn stocks left behind.
The not-so-cute vehicle transports almost anything conceivable – from children to the wedding cakes I baked. And it made me a celebrity among my daughters’ friends as they piled into the third seat so they could wave, giggle, and make faces at drivers of other cars.
If my SUV could talk, it would tell you its walls have absorbed oodles of giggles, good memories, secrets, and occasional spills.
Yes, the teeny, tiny yellow car is cute. It would be fun to drive and pretend I lead a carefree life. But I can’t cram my life into a cute, two-seater car…and I don’t want to.
About the Author
Michele Sprague is the author of the book, “Single Again 101,” and wrote hundreds of stories for corporate magazines and newsletters, “Sacramento Parent,” “womensrunning.com,” “The Huffington Post” and others. She lives with her husband in Michigan. (www.portfolio.michelesprague.com)