Tuesday, September 9, 2014


So while my FIAT 500 was in the shop, I didn't have much else to drive.  There was my 1980 Fiat Spider 2000, but that's a fair weather car.  We were having a typical western Pennsylvania spring, so I felt it best to keep it under wraps.  And so I carpooled to work with a friend.

One typical misty spring day, I needed to run an errand, so I took the Spider.  I was thankful to have one dependable car in the fleet anyway.

I don't know if the old man in the Mazda 6 saw me, but that didn't stop him from trying to cross four lanes of a highway after failing to wait at the stop sign.  But when our cars met in the middle of the road, I can tell you for certain that he saw me then.

The Spider made contact with his left front corner and caromed off across the west bound lanes (thankfully missing any oncoming traffic) and came to rest thirty yards down the road in a ditch.  I had to climb out the passenger side door, and my first thought was to pop the trunk and disconnect the battery.  After that, I surveyed the damage.

The suspension was a mess.  The door was driven back into the rear quarter panel and the body had buckled on top by the corner of the trunk lid.  The whole car was twisted in a way that instantly told me my favorite toy was a total loss.  The dash was cracked the whole way through the middle now and the back of the radio had been bent - I have no idea how.

Three weeks later, the insurance adjuster would confirm my suspicions.  The car would need more than $12,000 in repairs.  I accepted the check and sold the car for parts.

Not a day goes by that I don't think about that car.  It had given its life for me that day.  The top had been up; had it been down, I might have been ejected from the car.  I hit my head on one of the frame bows for sure.

So now I had nothing to drive to FIAT FreakOut in July.  I had zero running FIATs.

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