30 days of Adventure And Cars

Cars are causing me quite a bit of adventurish activity lately. Toot toot!

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I can't in all honesty say that I have tried out something new every single day in this 30 days of adventure but I have been pushing myself to places I don't normally choose to go, and which challenge me. Like working with a personal trainer, (that's for another blog, when I have recovered enough to talk about it.)

Cars have loomed large this month. First, my own trusty wee Renault started spluttering on hills. That wasn't an adventure but it did challenge me getting it home. The adventurous bit was using my husband's estate car which has so many 'quirks' you could write a book on it and put it in therapy for years.

But nothing daunted, I persevered. After all, at age 18 I used to drive around in my parent's old Austin Cambridge Estate, a huge beast with a classic wooden fascia and no power steering. I loved it and regularly tanked up and down the M4 twixt university and home (pre speed camera days).

But something happens to you when you have babies. Suddenly cars look like one massive safety risk. My speeding days were over. The very first time I took our newborn out in the baby seat I wanted to have a flashing blue light on top saying 'Don't dare to anything stupid as I have the most precious cargo on board in the entire world!' I've never quite recovered. Err, how old are my babies now you ask? Well.... 32 and 28. But still very precious.

Back to the present. The reason I don't like my husband's car is that he is 6ft 2inches tall and I am 5ft 3inches tall. By the time I have adjusted the seat and mirrors to suit I am so close to the steering wheel that on a long journey it makes a groove in my knees! Plus I get neck ache.

But I have persevered and am actually quite good at steering with my knees now. And I'm rocking the groovy knees look all summer long.

However, today our car man, Terry, called in person. The news was so dire that he didn't want to phone but had to give it face to face. My car is no more. It has reached the point where I might as well throw the money away than keep trying to fix it. My mid-life crisis impulse buy of a convertible is no longer with us. Sob.

I have to buy a new car.

I hate buying cars. I've only had this one 10 years. I just want one that won't damage the environment too much, won't break down, and has electric side mirrors (see previous para re husband's height. You can waste precious hours of your life altering mirrors). I hate being patronised by garage owners or hearing conversations taking place over my head as man talks to man, despite fact that my man probably knows less than me about cars. Obviously as a man he is superior in the car stakes. (As he is a retired fire-fighter I will concede he knows a lot about which cars are best to get crumpled up in but that's not always appropriate to know. And I can't afford a Saab anyway.)

So, where is the adventure in this, Jane? you cry. Well, I am going to do some research! I am going to read up on cars. I am going to go at the end of the month when sales folk need to get their figures in and I am more likely to get a good deal (see, I've begun researching already). I will know about fuel consumption, and other car stuff and above all, if someone tries to talk over me to my husband I will loudly say, 'Excuse me, this is MY car buying adventure! I am in charge here.'

PS All tips on car buying gratefully received...

RenewYou, an adventure in one day, lasts a lifetime.

Jane C Woods

Women's Personal Development Specialist - Changing People, -

Hi, I’m Jane C Woods and I have an absolute passion for helping women achieve success in their lives. Be it the glass ceiling, the crystal maze, or very personal issues, I’m all about helping women achieve to their full potential and live the way they want to without being carbon copies of men. But I’m not about putting men down in order for women to get ahead, there’s plenty of room; I just want the guys to shifty up a bit… If my face looks familiar it's because I love Psychologies magazine (I've been buying it since the very first issue, such a good resource) and it's the only place I choose to advertise my courses. I write on women’s issues on my blog, www.changingpeople.co.uk, and am regularly featured in magazines, and on radio, but I’m probably best known for RenewYou. RenewYou is my one day personal development course for women. We have an international network of experienced, specialist women licensed to deliver it and empower women across the globe. Our goal is to reach one million women. It’s a big goal but… In 2013 we started with a single RenewYou specialist, me. Now you can find a RenewYou Courses across the UK, in the USA, Canada, Greece, Bangkok, Pakistan, South Africa, Belgium, with new countries being added all the time. My dream was to create a thriving and caring business on ethical, and dare I say, feminine terms, with a real community spirit of help and encouragement. And it’s actually happening with the support, expertise, and enthusiasm of my wonderful trainers. I think, (apart from my two lovely kids, a daughter and a son) that it’s probably my proudest achievement to date. Wonderful Changing People Women: One of the joys and privileges of my work is that I’ve connected with some really inspirational and wonderful women – from politics to entertainment to academia. They include: TV presenter, house fixer and matchmaker Sarah Beeny Amazing entrepreneur Sam Roddick of Coco de Mer Outspoken and entertaining academic Mary Beard Politicians like Siobhan Benita and Natalie Bennett Ex BBC broadcaster Miriam O’Reilly who bravely took on the might of the BBC- and triumphed A very rare interview with Sarah Montague, of the influential BBC Radio 4 Today programme I hope you like the posts and I hope they are helpful. Live life to the max and never hide your light under any bushels!


Go to the profile of Karen Constantine
over 7 years ago
Hey Jane, yes I agree getting a new or replacement car can be a real pain. Faced with a similar dilemma, both seeking a car & adventure I opted for a camper van! Yay! I have never had such fun. We spent the first night camping out overlooking the sea, views to France. With a great group if friends. Our next trip was more adventurous still. We went to Latitude music festival. This time with 3 other women friends - all in there beloved vans. Sweet freedom, camp meals, ropey toilet facilities! The next trip is imminent. I have wanted a van for as long as I can remember, it took my over 30 years to realise my dream. I could have been sensible, I could have easily ignored my own deep & sometimes dormant desires. But one of my stated & written goals is to have more fun & adventure. That motivated me to 'do it for myself!' A car gets you from a to b. That's all. Just get one & then get on with the things that really matter! Good luck!
Go to the profile of Janice Taylor
over 7 years ago
Good luck with this Jane, I may well need to do the same in a few months. I like your mindset as seeing it as an adventure, rather than a pain in the proverbial.
Go to the profile of Catherine Eadie
over 7 years ago
Buying, owning, maintaining cars I feel is quite an individual thing? I remember when I was 18 and I got my first second-hand car, somehow test driving about four different types I was meant to automatically know which I felt was going to be a better purchase! Your kidding right..... So I settled on my little Amadeus, a red VW Polo hatchback. It turned out to be the best thing since sliced bread. I then met my husband who was a car mechanic and he nurtured Amadeus for me, did all the servicing, parts, spares etc. We kept Amadeus for over 10 years and by that time we needed to replace it (I think the car was about 15 years old by then). Having had such a good experience with the make and model of my very first car we didn't take any risks and got another VW Polo and we're now on our 3rd one. Good luck with your researching, I suspect the final decision will be based on your test drive. You get a chance to go with what really feels comfortable for you.
Go to the profile of Fiona Barnes
over 7 years ago
I'm with Karen on the fact that a car just gets me from a to b. I think the sales person had a bit of a heart attack when I chose my last car. I knew the make & model I wanted, the engine size, mpg consumption etc. I'd researched based on the height of the car from the ground (based on the fact I have dodgy knees) and I knew I wanted an automatic. The salesman seemed fixated on the fact that, as a woman, I should choose a colour. My view was that, so long as it wasn't orange or pink, I really didn't care - I'd just have whatever colour that the soonest available car to meet my specification was available. He really didn't know what to say!
Go to the profile of Jane C Woods
over 7 years ago
Thanks for the comments, darlings. A car salesman once told me that women never buy green cars. My car before this one was green.... At least he didn't try to sell me a pink one! My Mum is mad for purple: purple front door, purple kitchen, purple furry cushions, purple lamps, and her car was? You've guessed it, purple! Jane PS Until I wrote it several times I didn't realise what an odd looking one 'purple' is. Isn't it?
Go to the profile of Linda Huckle
over 7 years ago
Extend the mid life crisis Jane and go with the flow! Buy with your heart and not your head - and RenewYou with a new car!!!
Go to the profile of Frank Gary
over 7 years ago
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