Thursday, May 26, 2011


When I came back from Korea in December 2010, my son had bought me a second-hand car with my money. It was a Honda Civic that someone had in their garage and never used anymore. It had a cracked windshield and faded paint job. He had the car checked out and replaced the windshield and had the car repainted. It gets wonderful gas mileage. I did not have a car in Korea.
I drove it home from Los Angeles to Redding and had no trouble with it.

I have the car with me here in Portland. If there is a problem, it is that I tend to use it instead of walking. The library is across the street and many people walk there, but I have been driving there instead. I have other places to go after the library and often to the store which is not far from the the library and again many people tend to walk there too from this apartment complex although they have a car. I don't. I really need to. In Korea, I would have.

I have not figured out the bus system yet. I see them everywhere and someone told me that they run every 30 or 40 minutes. Many people use the bus system especially if they are going downtown. I can understand that because it cost to park there. I have paid at least $5.00 to park for the few hours that I have gone there and I did not stay there very long. It is quite an incentive to learn the bus system. I am not far from the downtown area but the area of Portland is full of small towns and dead end streets.

My youngest adult child will be giving me a truck this summer if things work out so I will end up with two vehicles. I am looking forward to this as I am needing furniture for my apartment and can buy second-hand if I can transport my purchases. If I buy new, the companies will deliver; but I can buy so much more on my income if I have a truck. I am hoping the insurance won't break me. It gets 11 miles per gallon of gas so I won't be using it all that much.

As I wrote, the Honda that I have gets great mileage and I have been driving around Portland trying to find my way around and getting lost ever so often. The road rage that I experienced in Redding is just the same as I experience here in Portland although I wonder if my California license plates make some people irritable. Who knows?

The gas is cheaper here in Oregon than in California and you can't pump your own gas. I have to make sure I tell the attendant that I don't want the gas topped off. If it is, my car smells like gasoline for a week or so on the inside.

I know it all sounds a bit boring owning and driving a car, but for many years I could not afford a car and had to take the bus to different places. I have never gotten over the amount of freedom owning a car can give me. I hear people complain that friends are always asking for rides but I rarely have people ask for them. My son said people were always asking him to help them move with his truck. I don't think people will assume I own one. It got a bit dangerous walking in the dark and in deserted places years ago to bus stops and one time a bus driver saved my life when I was a teenager. This was in San Diego. Some guys in a car tried to force me into their car as I was exiting the bus. He pulled me back into the bus and closed the doors. This was a time before the buses had radios. He saw a sailor on a bus stop and gave him a dime to call the police. The car took off. I like being in a car now.

I live in a great neighborhood and never see dogs off a leash. People walk and jog around here. I wonder now why Redding could not make their neighborhoods safer by picking up the dogs that ran around without leashes. People complained as I did and they said they would come out only if someone was in the process of being attacked. One of my neighbors took his gun and shot a dog that was attacking his grandson. It was a large pit bull. I am afraid of large dogs off of leashes. I should walk. Maybe some day I will.

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