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Darlene M Caban

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A Fond Farewell To My CRX
By Darlene M Caban   

Last edited: Monday, November 17, 2003
Posted: Monday, November 17, 2003

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I bought my Honda CRX in 1988, just as I started hemodialysis. At the time, I was extremely ill and didn't think I was going to live very long. "What the hell," I thought, "I might as well go out driving a cute little sports car." The CRX was white with black accent stripes, and had a slate blue interior... the first brand-new car I'd ever owned.

So here it is, fifteen years later. Not only have I failed to die, I have out-lived my car! It is currently parked in the back yard, forlornly awaiting its Last Drive to the junkyard. I am zipping around in a Neon and feel somewhat guilty that I don't feel worse about 'retiring' the CRX... I thought I'd be more upset than I am.

Sure, the CRX was a cute little car, but it had its share of problems, too-- it had only two seats, and an extremely cranky hatch. I can't tell you how many times that hatch came down and clonked me in the head as I loaded groceries into the cargo area. The windows fogged up in both humid and frigid weather, requiring me to peer out of tiny holes in the fog to see where I was driving. Since the car weighed next to nothing, I was often sliding around in snow, and had to carry a shovel in the car because I would get stuck in 5 inches of snow. Snow would collect into huge 'tire icebergs' in the front wheel wells, and I had to pull over after 10 minutes' driving to kick the snow out of the tires, or I would end up sliding all over the road. I literally had to fight the car to steer it since it had no power steering-- the only 'power' was whatever muscle power I had in my arms! Parallel parking was quite an adventure-- I had to make about 18 steering corrections just to get into the parking space in front of my apartment. After a tough day at dialysis, trying to park the damned car took all of the remaining energy I had.

About six months ago, the CRX was 'diagnosed' with a cracked head gasket. I knew that its days were numbered, so I became a relative recluse, only driving to my dialysis treatments and to the grocery store. I realized that I had to get another car quickly, but after fifteen years of driving a small car, I wasn't confident in my ability to adjust to a bigger car. Luckily, the Neon isn't a whole lot bigger than the CRX, so I decided to go with it.

Lest you think my fifteen years with the CRX was sheer misery, I will say that the first five or so years with the car were quite fun-- zipping around the streets, beating Camaros at the green lights, looking cool in my cute little car. At the time, I'd just had a kidney transplant, and having the car helped me re-establish the sense of independence I'd lost when I'd gone on dialysis.

Today I will take my final pictures of the CRX as it sits in the yard. I'll sit in the driver's seat one last time and thank it for fifteen years of service. Even though I'll be driving a Neon, I'll always be a CRX pilot.



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