I could tell something was wrong sometime after the first of the year, by March I knew it was getting worse, and in the last couple weeks it was scary once or twice. I described it to my boyfriend as not having enough power; I'd step on the gas and the RPMs would go way up (and the engine sounded fine) but I didn't go any faster. This was especially bad on uphills and trying to merge on the highway. He drove it briefly on Sunday and was all - it's the clutch plate, and you really shouldn't be driving this car anywhere at this point. Whee. This brought up two (okay, and a half) thoughts.
1) J did come to the garage with me to explain the problem. I'm not thrilled with the idea that a guy talking to the mechanic will get more respect than a girl (I understood the issue after J explained it so I could have done it alone), but it just feels true. This makes me wonder if bringing J along was simply smart, or somehow pandering to the status quo. In either case, I'm grateful to J for the help.
1.5) I wish I knew more about cars. Lumped in with this is that I wish there were more female mechanics, somehow cars have become such a boy thing.
2) My poor car. It was in an accident before I bought it and there are lingering issues from that - like the back end isn't square - that I have not ever fixed due to cost. This makes every repair a bigger question of whether or not it's worth putting the money into this car or not. Then again I realized today that I've owned this car for 8.5 years which is the longest I've ever had a vehicle and it still runs well. I suppose it's the same cost/benefit analysis everyone needs to do for car repairs, but I've been slowly inching towards 'not worth it' for a few years, and wonder when I'm going to reach that point.
While my car is in the shop J is letting me use his. So I've switched from a standard Civic compact, to an automatic Frontier pick-up. I like driving it so far, but really hate parking lots in a vehicle that big.