First, you should note that, I didn't want a new van. I was perfectly happy with the one I had. However, when recently told that my van needed more repairs than it was worth, the decision was really made for me.
Since we really didn't know where to start, we started with test driving 2 new cars: the Chrysler Town and Country and the Honda Odyssey.
That was stupid. Who goes and test drives brand new cars when they know they can't afford them?
Uh, that would be us.
We were quickly jolted back to reality. Can you say sticker shock?
We moved on to the used Town and Country. It seemed as though we could not even afford a used Odessey.
We found a 2006 Limited with the leather seats and a DVD player, so we went to look at it.
It was beautiful from the outside. I was so excited about it. Low miles, 2006, Limited, leather, dvd, very few if any scratches. I opened the driver's side door. My eyes were immediately drawn to the front. Wood grain paneling... it was beautiful.
But, then, my heart about stopped. I look at the area between the drivers seat and passengers seat. I saw this plastic, mountain- shaped, center console.
Sorry, it's a bad picture of it.
Besides leather and a dvd player, I had dreamed of a center console. Don't laugh! You have taken your center console for granted. I have never had one. I had this mickey mouse thing that pull out from the passenger's seat on my old van. 90% of the time, it wouldn't stay out to hold the drink, the drink would fall, and so there are lots of stains all over the floor.
I couldn't fathom buying that van with that ridiculous looking console in it (sorry Town and Country people).
Anyway, I got behind the steering wheel and tried to enjoy the test drive, but my heart was sick. It also smelled a bit like a wet dog. NEVER a good thing in my book.
I drove the car for........ MAYBE 5 minutes......... Maybe.
We went back to the dealership and walked over to the desk where our little salesmen sat.
"Oh, I loved the way it drove, but I am just not sure."
"Not sure! What are you not sure about?"
"I don't really know."
All huffy and puffy he said, "Well, I have never heard anyone say they liked the way a car drove but they didn't like the car."
If I were a smart alec... like I REALLY want to be sometimes, I would have said, "Welp, now you have!"
We walked outside, talked some more, yada, yada, yada.
Finally he said, "Why don't you take it home, drive it longer in an area that if familiar to you. If you like it, bring it back Friday (it was Wednesday). I am off tomorrow.
"Well, if I don't like it, I'll bring it back tomorrow when your not here."
You think I am kidding. I'm not. I really said that.
When we returned home with the Town and Country, I got on my blog and a good friend had left me a message about her Odyssey and how much she loves it and that it has 180,000 miles on it and it's still going strong.
I knew then and there and probably way before that... that I only wanted a Honda.
Well, lo and behold did God have a plan for us. That same night we found the EXACT Odyssey we were looking for AND we could afford the price.
We called the number the next day at 8 am on the nose.
The guy informed us that it was pending. He and Paul talked for a good 45 minutes. In the course of the conversation, we found out this guy was a believer. He was headed to an auction that morning for corporate leases. He told us he'd look for a van with the things we wanted.
At 10:2o am, he called to ask if the color gold was ok.
At 12:09 pm, he called to tell us he was able to purchase it.
We drove up a week ago Saturday, loved the van, loved the guy and so we bought the van.
This guy began his little dealership not too long ago when he lost his job. He and his wife taped Psalm 138 to their computer screen and held on tight while praying to God for wisdom and success.
Their goal is to get families into Hondas who could otherwise not afford them. They make money on quantity. They live near a Honda plant; they go to the auctions and buy the corporate leases.
I've never found another Odyssey for the price he gave us. He also allowed us to purchase the extended warranty for his cost $500 (original cost $1500). This warranty is good for an additional 100,000 miles or 5 years.
And, guess what? I have the Mac Daddy of all center consoles. I can have 6 different drinks at my disposal... if I want.
Ladies and gentleman, may I present to you: MY 2005 HONDA ODYSSEY.
A glimpse of the long awaited center console. In the picture, sitting on my console is A) an iphone that no longer works because it was dropped in the toilet (By the way, it was dropped the night I came home with that Town and Country...grrrr) and B) some hair gel for Jackson. (Slimed some gel on his hair on the way into church on Sunday morning.)