The below image encapsulates a particularly poignant moment in any man's life...
...the moment when you bid a fond farewell to your first post-college car.
I've posted regarding the "Little Blue Car" before, both in reference to Disney's Animated Short and other adventures pertaining to my 1992 Geo Prizm - but this will be a post that may just bring tears to your eyes along with mine... so be prepared with the tissues.
(That's a joke, by the way. If anyone other than me cries at this... wait, I mean, uh... I'm not crying!)
The blessing of this is that my little car was able to continue on its legacy of being a useful little auto to someone who needed a good little car.
When I bought the car at the end of college, Meghan and I were about to be married and her car was beginning to get suspiciously close to retirement. Since she didn't drive a manual transmission, she got to drive my buick for the next two years while I got the 'new' car. The little blue car had belonged to my Kindergarten teacher at our Lutheran Grade School - and I actually had distinct memories of it when I was in 6th and 8th grades as she would come back to school after a quick lunch at home, bringing the little prizm to a stop in the parking lot outside the classrooms with little fanfare.
We went on our honeymoon in the little blue car. A drive across Michigan's lower Peninsula to a quaint B&B in the rolling southwest corner of the state. The car (eleven years old at the time) got 40 mpg the whole trip!
I drove it through torrential rainstorms as we caravanned to the Seminary in St. Louis.
It took me to my fieldwork church twice each week.
It withstood (without damage) being rear-ended at stoplights on at least two occasions. (Someday we'll talk about St. Louis drivers...)
It drove us back to Michigan for Christmas the year we'd found out that we were going to be parents... and home again after our cat died suddenly while staying at Meghan's parents' house during that same trip.
It was an expert at playing in snowy parking lots - and boldly tackled frosty roads that cars twice its size cowered at.
It has even gone to the races (as a spectator), and chased around a little Russian car for some post-game amusement.
It has carried bikes, children, recycling, luggage, fishtanks, old tires, outdoor furniture, and friends.
It has been criticized, mocked, enjoyed, ticketed (but never for speeding), and marveled at (it still gets better than 35 mpg on a regular basis).
...and it never refused to be exactly what it needed to be.
We could learn a lot about friendship and family loyalty from inanimate objects like a reliable little car.