On Friday, I took the car in for an oil change and for a check on any damage from an encounter with a pothole. It turns out that I will be needing front brakes soon, as well as one of the ball joints in the tire that took the brunt of the pothole jolt.
Naturally, they couldn't do it right away because they were jammed. And truly, in over ten years of going to this place, I'd never seen quite that many people in the service waiting room.
Burning another vacation day for car repairs isn't my idea of a fun day off. Still, it's better than using their van service to take me to and from work: not only does it take much longer, it increases my anxiety level all out of proportion. No idea why.
Thursday I'll be taking the car in at 7:15 a.m. Too early for me to go to Panera for a while beforehand (somehow I'm not sure their van service would drop off and pick up at Panera - though I suppose I could ask). The bag of entertainment (Kindle Fire, regular Kindle (in case the battery wears out the first), journal, pens and an actual book (in case the batteries both...I hate the idea of being without a book)) will go along. I'm willing to wait at the dealer for up to three hours; if it will be longer, I'll ask to be taken home.
Given that my car is now twelve years old, it is probably time to consider getting a new(ish) one. Small SUV (emphasis on "small"), I think. A bit of cargo space would be a good thing. All wheel drive not necessary, but 4WD available if at all possible. I put on less than 7,000 miles per year, so something coming off of a lease program, or a used car with under 40,000 miles would work.
With those general parameters, what would you recommend?