|Our car is in there somewhere. (Credit: AMSmith)|
I have been trolling the social science data sites lately for a data set that relates to minimalism that I can use for my statistics term paper. Yes, I know that this is incredibly fascinating. Insert sarcasm here. Before you abandon ship and decide that my blog just took a turn for the yucky because I used the word statistics, let me tell you two things: (1) This isn't a stats post and (2) 9.8% of those sampled for the General Social Survey (for all years) do not own a car. Isn't that amazing?
This is actually a post about the awesomeness of owning just one car. Hubby and I own a 2007 Chevy Aveo5. We are the original owners and we love the heck out of our little car. I do enjoy the looks I get though when it comes up during conversation that we only have the one vehicle. The first question people ask is, "How does your husband get to work?" This usually comes up in conjunction with the fact that I commute 160 miles round-trip twice a week to school. As hubby likes to put it, he takes the shoelace express to work -- otherwise known as walking. We have been doing our best to not acquire another vehicle until it is absolutely necessary. Therefore, when we were looking for a new apartment, three conditions had to be fulfilled:
- The apartment had to be within a 20 minute walk to hubby's work.
- The apartment needed to accept cats and have a reasonable pet rent/deposit set up. (We couldn't leave our kids homeless now could we?)
- The apartment had to have easy access to the freeway for me.
The requirements quickly narrowed our search down to three possible apartment communities in the area. Since we were (and still are) adamant about only having one vehicle, the first requirement for our home was an absolute must.
Owning one care is pretty awesome though. We only need to insure and maintain the one vehicle. To be honest, I couldn't imagine keeping up with the maintenance on two cars. It seems at this point in our car's life that we are at the shop every three to four months for oil changes and other stuff. Also, owning one car means that hubby and I communicate A LOT about our transportation needs and can usually work our way around any issues that crop up. Each semester, my schedule changes a bit, but since we live so close to his work that's never a problem and he rarely takes the car to work if I don't need it that day since walking is one of his main forms of exercise.
Obviously, issues do come up every so often. On my first day back at school this semester, I was driving home and the check engine light came on. Luckily, I hadn't left town yet, so I wasn't in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night. Hubby called AAA and arranged for the car to be towed back to our shop and I rode home with the tow truck guy. Was it a bit awkward? Sure. But, at least I didn't have to worry about where I was staying that night or with arranging for the car to get fixed. Luckily, it was just a cracked hose that probably did something important. (I don't really know all that much about cars, that's why I have AAA.)
All in all, the single car lifestyle works really well for us. We're able to save the money that we would otherwise spend on a second vehicle and do our part for the environment.