Thursday, July 30, 2009

Her Maiden Voyage

The last time we saw the Sebring, in Newark, New Jersey, before she got put in a container with a Porsche Boxster and a Mercedes and on the ship to the old world. Too bad Porsche and Sebring didn't make any babies, they probably would've been pretty sweet!

Let me just start with this: Never before have I adored a car as I adore my Sebring. She is reliable, looks good, and drives so smoothly! It made me very sad, and pretty mad, when I hit that stupid deer back in April. Never before did I want to kill something like I wanted to kill that deer! I never thought I would become a person who likes driving a 6-cylinder or even care, but it really does make a difference. And for those of you tree-huggers who are thinking "A 6-cylinder! But you're killing the environment!" No, I'm not. This car gets the same or better gas mileage as our old Volvo, and way better than the Jeep Grand Cherokee, which we sold not so much out of our wish to conserve gas, but more out of our wish to conserve our Euros.

Sebring arrived last weekend in Bremerhaven, Germany. All the paperwork was finished pretty quickly, and Sauer Kraut went to get her yesterday. Sebring arrived mostly unscathed, she got a couple little dings on the way, but no paint damage, and who knows, maybe the tiny dents were already there before she left the new world. Fortunately, Sebring did not suffer the fate of a Corvette at the same agents':

Ouch. Something fell on that car's roof! The owner was circling the car with a VERY sour look on his face...

Customs in Bremerhaven was no problem, we had all of our paperwork in order and since this car was brought as part of a move and we have owned it for nearly a year, we didn't have to pay any import tax. The first thing I heard about Sebring's maiden voyage: "It drives so much better than the BMW!" (S.K. drove a rental car to get the Sebring) The drive went well, Sebring likes the Autobahn. Then, later on, about 59 kilometers from Dresden, I got a call informing me that something metal just flew off the car and whatever it was couldn't be found. Maybe it was the antenna, the antenna broke off because of a crazy wind situation due to things attached to the luggage rack on the roof. Huh. About a half hour later, I got another call that the car quit on the A13 Autobahn. Excuse me? This made me kind of sad, thinking that this may be Sebring's first and last tour in Germany. I had to call ADAC and order a tow truck or a "yellow angel", the guy who comes and helps you when your car dies. So, the yellow angel arrived quickly, and I also received a call pretty soon: The car is running again! And guess what the problem was: the gas tank was empty. That was a pretty expensive fill-up courtesy of ADAC. Apparently, the gas gauge did not show that the gas was nearly out. Maybe it's just confused because the shippers had to pump out the remaining gas to ship the car. Or maybe they filled up the tank with contraband and forgot to take it out before giving us our car back. This really did happen not too long ago in Michigan: a man bought a used car, and the gas gauge always showed a half tank or so. Finally, he got the car checked out, and the gas tank was full of cocaine.

Today we had some things to do in Dresden, and it is just amazing how people stare at our car. For me, she's just a normal car, but for the Dresdner, it's something like a UFO. I think it's because she is lower than most cars, like Passats or even Mini Coopers, and she is long and sleek, so she has the essence of a race car. In the parking garage at the supermarket, some guys were staring at her, and got these goofy smiles on their faces as if they just fell in love with Sebring. Give me €10,000 and in a year, she's yours. Before that we'd have to pay some major tax for selling her. No, not really. I think I'll keep her. She's something special, not only good looking, but practical. You should see her trunk!

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