“Okay, now I’m thinking of something blue. Something bluuuuuuuuuuue!”

This is our new car. These are more pictures of it if you’re interested.

Saw the ad for it online on Friday morning. Rang the seller and it was still available. So Darrin left work early and had a look, had a drive, bought it, and we drove it home instead of riding the stupid bus yet again.


1991 Holden Commodore VN

V6, automatic, power steering, power door locks (they don’t work), air conditioning (probably needs a charge), CD player (sounds GREAT!), 235,000 kilometres (around 145,000 miles), all seatbelts work properly instead of getting twisted, no clunking noises turning corners, the interior is near perfect, and the seats do not give you a sore butt like the Mazda’s seats did. Oh, and the boot (trunk) is big enough to hide a body. Maybe even two.

I’ve even moved the passenger seat ALL THE WAY FORWARD and was still comfortable, whereas in the Mazda I had it all the way back and thought I could use more room. And behind the front seats there’s still enough room that my dad & brother, both of whom are over 6 feet tall, could sit comfortably.

There are a few little things (like the aforementioned door locks) that could use some work, but there’s nothing wrong with it mechanically or structurally. Visors, fuses, things like that.

You know, I’m really starting to hate Adelaide Metro.

{mosimage}Before I start my rant, let me announce that as of last Tuesday, I am working two hours a night at the school cleaning. This is a good thing. It gives us a little more money and since I finish at about the same time as Darrin, it means we get to ride home together.

Adelaide Metro, by the way, is our public transportation system.

So first things first. A few weeks ago they rerouted and adjusted some of the bus timetables. One of the really nice things about this was that we now have a five-minute walk to a bus to Paradise Interchange rather than a 15-minute walk. Still takes about the same time (half an hour) to get to Paradise, but in summer & winter when the weather is nasty it’s a huge improvement. However a lot of people weren’t thrilled with this new arrangement (not our bus specifically, but other buses being changed). They’ve written letters to the editor complaining about their bus service not being there anymore when they use it, or being rerouted so they have to walk further to the bus stop, etc.

Today I am one of those people who are unhappy with the new routes. Due to the car being dead, Darrin is another. Here’s an example of their lameness.

To get to work at 8:28, Darrin has to leave here at 7:10, catch the 104 bus to Paradise at 7:15, and arrive at Paradise at 7:43, just as the T500 going to the school pulls out of the interchange. The next T500 doesn’t run again for another half hour. So Darrin’s stuck sitting at Paradise for half an hour, today in 7C weather (which he seems to tolerate much better than I do), and then get on the T500 at 8:13. If not for that half hour wait, he’d be at work in 50 minutes, which is only 20 minutes longer than it takes him to drive there. Instead, it takes him an hour and 20 minutes.

Oh, and did I mention that this annoying timing is only in the mornings? When I leave for work, I only have a ten-minute wait at Paradise. It should be 5 minutes, but for reasons unknown, the buses run on time in rush hour and late during non-rush hours.

Now let’s look at the return trip. The last T500 back to Paradise goes past school just before 5 pm. Not a problem for Darrin – if he was the only one working there. I, however, don’t finish till 5:10 or 5:15. And did you notice I said this was the LAST T500? Now we have to catch a different bus. Previously the other option would have been to catch the 560 and switch at Tea Tree Plaza, but oh look! They’ve cut down the 560 service as well, so they’re THREE HOURS APART. That’s right. 4 pm and 7 pm. Nothing in between.

Our third, and least favourable option, is to catch the 205F into the city. The 205F goes past school just as we’re finishing up. We might be lucky enough to catch that one today, if we’re quick. Otherwise we’ll be sitting around for another FORTY MINUTES for the next one. And then we’ll be on that bus for another FORTY MINUTES into the city. And once we get into the city, we get off the 205F just as the 102 back to home is crossing our path. Which means another 15 minute wait for the 104/105, a 20 minute bus ride, and another 5 minute walk. In total, last night this took us AN HOUR AND A HALF to get home at 7:20, not counting waiting for the second 205F.

And they wonder why people don’t use public transportation!

Rust In Pieces

We knew it’d happen eventually. We just hoped it’d happen in the yard and not up in the hills.

Our Mazda 323 is, essentially, dead. Still runs, but it won’t move. For months the CV joint has been making clunking noises on right turns. Today it finally went. We think it dropped a piece or two somewhere near Eden Valley or Mount Pleasant as we were driving back from orienteering. Then going up a big hill outside Gumeracha it made a final clunk and wouldn’t go any further. So Darrin backed it up and across the road so it was off the pavement, rang up his brothers, and we got a lift home. Once we got home and had some lunch, he rang up some salvage yards to see if anyone wanted it. He finally found one who’d drive out to Gumeracha and pick it up. So we’re waiting to hear from the guy again to see if the cost of towing it is less than the money we’d get from selling it to them, but either way, they can take it. It’d cost more than the car is worth to get it fixed properly, and it’s served its purpose.

For the time being, we’ll have to rely on buses and rides from friends. We’re looking for a decent replacement, but today there’s nothing much in our price range. But hey, at least we’re not (directly) paying for petrol.

No pomp, no circumstance.

{mosimage}Today I have my certificate from the bookkeeping course. I am officially a bookkeeper.

Also by popular demand I have added my chocolate peanut butter cheesecake to the recipes database. And maybe a couple other things.