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SoCal Trip?

I’ve been planning on going down to visit family in northern Arizona for quite a while now, but I’m starting to think I might need to go on down to SoCal, San Diego specifically. There’s been quite a few times lately when I’ve started to feel homesick for the salt air of the sea and the feel and flavor of freezing cold Pacific Ocean water. I miss the Star of India, Seaport Village, La Jolla, the Aerospace museum, and Coronado. I just purchased a new car, so I can’t say my vehicle is unreliable and I can probably find a way to pay for gas and a hotel room if I try. It’s a five hour drive, not too bad at all.

Maybe it’s time to go back for a visit…


First Pic Of My New HHR!

Yep, I promised it so now I’m delivering – here’s the first pic of my new HHR :thumb:

My New Cardinal Red 2008 Chevy HHR LS

My Cavalier was a true basic car – crank windows, manual doorlocks, etc. The only option on that car was the deck spoiler! OK, so it had ABS and a CD player standard, but that was about it. The Cavalier had developed a few quirks over the years. I’d smelled a bit of coolant here and there, the air conditioning (a necessity in Las Vegas!) wouldn’t blow cold if the temperature was over about 85 degrees and you were going slower than about 45 MPH, and the speedometer would either read zero or 50 MPH too high on cold mornings. I won’t miss those quirks :D !!!

Fast forward and now I’m still trying to get used to some things in the HHR. Remote keyless entry, power windows, mirrors, and door locks, cruise control, auto-dimming rear view mirror, automatic headlamps, speed sensitive wipers, On Star – it’s all a bit overwhelming at times, but in a good way :) I can’t believe how quiet it is on the freeway and how smooth it rides. I just love the styling and all the room inside – all this with 30+ highway MPG :D Oh yeah, I made sure to get the 6 year, 72,000 mile warranty with zero deductible and the

There are a few custom touches I’d like to add sometime such as body color or chrome mirrors, chrome doorhandles if chrome mirrors, a billet grille, custom wheels, some interior chrome, maybe an OEM leather steering wheel, and a possible cold-air intake. Of course, I’m going to add a few Parrothead decals to the windows, too :thumb:

Have fun and drive safe :) !!!



Yep, I went down to the Chevy dealer on Sunday and left in a brand new car :thumb: ! I am now the proud owner of a 2008 Chevrolet HHR LS with the 2.2L engine and 5 speed manual transmission 8)

I don’t know where the charger for my AA batteries is right now, but I’ll post pictures once I find it. Until then, this stock photo will have to suffice.

Cardinal Red Metallic 2008 Chevy HHR LS

More detals soon, hopefully with the pics :wink:


My “Eleanor” – The 1988 IROC-Z That Still Haunts Me

The crash of my Cavalier got me thinking about another black Chevy I once owned and loved which met a similar fate. Quite a few years back now, I owned a 1988 IROC-Z that’s still my favorite car out of all that I’ve owned 8) .

I have to admit that Eleanor (I named her after the Shelby in Gone in 60 Seconds) was problematic from day one. I purchased her from a supposed friend for $3,000, but failed to do a pre-purchase inspection – the seller was a friend, right? Well, I did my first oil change and found that the oil looked like a chocolate milkshake – coolant in the oil :shock: !!! It turned out that when said friend’s wife was driving it, it severely overheated, blowing the freeze plugs as well as (not known at the time) cracking the block down the lifter valley in a way that it could not be welded. My supposed (read as former) friend then insisted that I had done this racing the car. BULLSHIT :evil: !

With the loan of $1,000 from a friend, I was able to procure and have installed a used engine out of an ’88 Firebird and we were back in business! Even with having to replace the starter, alternator, mass airflow sensor, oxygen sensor, engine computer ($80 at Auto Zone WOO HOO!!!), many hoses, the distributor, and a few other things (mostly done myself), I still loved the sound of the 305ci V8 engine, the open air feel of having the T-Tops off, and the feel of driving something that was just so FUN :thumb: !!!

To tell the truth, the accident which ended my time with Eleanor was a blessing even if it was heartbreaking. You see, the check engine light was not about to go out and nobody could fix it. It needed a tune-up, it needed to be smogged within a week, and I was broke. A 17 year old girl screwed up and wound up crashing into me and totaling Eleanor. Her insurance company paid me much more than they should have (long story) and hauled Eleanor away.

Now that I’m back in the market for a car after over six years, I’ve found myself on several websites looking for another black (yes, even in Vegas in the summer my IROC would have to be black :P !) ’88 IROC with T-Tops and scheming for ways to afford them. No, it’s not the most practical car by any stretch of the imagination, and yes it would be labor intensive, but I still think about all the fun times I had in my IROC and how much I would love to have another one.

While in the process of moving, I recently came across some pictures of my IROC and I’ll post one soon after I find it and have a chance to scan it.


And the Hits Just Keep On Coming – LITERALLY

Driving home from work today, I had a rather unpleasant experience. I was involved in my first high speed accident on the freeway.

The basics are that I was in the next to slow lane and was getting ready to merge one more lane to the left. Turn signal on, I checked my blind spot and when I looked back ahead of me, there was a car directly in front of me who’d just cut me off and slammed on the brakes. I slammed on mine, but realized that no matter what, my Cavalier was going to merge with that little white car if I didn’t do something more. That’s when I swerved into the lane on my right side. On the good side, I missed the little white car. The bad news was that someone else couldn’t avoid hitting me along the passenger side. The other car was a silver ’95 Isuzu Trooper. The impact sent him off to the right – directly towards the guardrail. He swerved back to the left, fishtailing, then back to the right across three lanes of traffic before getting it under control. We pulled over and called the NHP. Nobody was hurt and both cars were drivable after all was said and done.

I didn’t have a current insurance card on me, so I got cited for that as well as for an unsafe lane change with accident. NHP officer Rojas is to be commended for her courtesy and professionalism.

I’ve already filed a claim with AAA and I’m supposed to get a call from the adjuster tomorrow. I’m worried they’ll total my car as I don’t have the greatest credit and I don’t have much down.

I’m just looking on the bright side for right now – everyone’s OK and my car is drivable.

Hit the jump for pics of the Cavalier taken just after the accident.

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