Here, I thought I’d gotten myself set up for a nice roll of posts, one for each book—how hard could that be. Ah well, the best-laid plans. That schedule, like summer, has slipped away from me. I’m still going to do it, but for right now, here’s a catch-up.
This last week saw us buying a new car (!), thanks to the latest breakdown of our old, much loved, Aerostar van coinciding with the U.S. government’s Cash for Clunkers program. We took the plunge on the last day of the program, sneaking in just under the wire after driving all over the greater Boston area looking for the car we wanted. It’s a Ford Fusion, and it looks just like this stock photo:
We love our new car. It’s comfortable and drives great and gets good mileage for a nonhybrid, and it’s like a spaceship cockpit on the inside. Voice-activated control over my Zune, for heaven’s sake! Thanks to the Sync feature, I can press a button on the steering wheel and say, “Play artist Dido,” and it’ll play Dido. Or “Play playlist Roadtunes,” and it’ll do that. It’s just so damn cool. (I’m also extremely grateful to those who helped make it possible for us to buy it, I should add.) By sheerest coincidence, we picked it up on my birthday. I ain’t saying how old I am, but it was a milestone birthday, and let’s leave it at that.
That very night, I heard the sad news that Senator Ted Kennedy had died. This breaks my heart. He was, I believe, one of the finest senators who ever served in the U.S. Congress. A wealthy man by birth, he devoted himself tirelessly to the cause of the poor, the disadvantaged, the underserved—and he did it right up to the end. Yes, he had personal failings, there’s no denying that. But I will be forever grateful for his public service, and his willingness to reach across the aisle even as he stuck to his guns as a died-in-the-wool liberal Democrat. I just pray that someone will step up who can fill those shoes.
Tomorrow the new car, code-named Centauri, takes its first big run. Yes, summer is over and it’s time to take Alexandra back to college. Road trip!