Goodbye 1988 Mercury Tracer

Ok, so people who have known me for a long time know that for many years I drove a 1987 Jeep Wrangler.  Well when I was pregnant with Tara I realized that wasn’t going to be the greatest car with kids.  It would be really hard to get a kid out of the backseat.  Well my parents had my grandmother’s old 1988 Mercury Tracer so we traded cars with them.  At the time we also had Sam’s 2000 Ford Ranger pickup truck, also not a good family car.  Well we did the cash for clunkers program and traded it in for $4000 towards the 2009 Nissan Versa we bought.  Well the Mercury Tracer made it over 2 good years for us, but it started to leak oil like crazy.  This is when we started looking at cars.  Now we are big on not having debt, so we bought the Nissan with cash.  We wanted to do the same this time around.  We also wanted a bit more to the new car (larger, AC, and power locks).  After some hunting and it being the time when 2012 cars were coming out we finally were able buy a 2011 Ford Escape.  We did finance it for one month, but only so we could actually get more money off of it.  That still leaves the Mercury Tracer.  We tried to trade it in when buying the Escape, but they wouldn’t take it, it was so old.  Our plan was to sell it privately then.  Well I realized on a good day we might be able to get $600 for it, but we would have to get it smog checked again to sell it.  Now we weren’t positive what would happen if it didn’t pass, so I started looking at the CA DMV website and found that California has a Vehicle Retirement program (i.e. very similar to the federal cash for clunkers a few years ago).  The nice part was that it didn’t require that the car had failed the smog test.  Nicely it gives you $1000.  So we applied to the program.  Many many weeks went by while the website had said 7 to 10 days.  When we bought the Escape we had removed the Tracer from our insurance since we weren’t driving it.  Well the state of California sent us a notice that mid December our registration would be suspended if we didn’t provide proof of registration.  This got us quickly trying to figure out why we had not heard from the program.  Sam finally called around and the local office said if we brought a new form to them they would have an answer to us within 3 to 5 days.  So I brought it in last wednesday morning and by Saturday we had the paper saying are car was approved for the program.  Finally yesterday I brought the car to one of the approved dismantlers and finally got my check for $1000.  It was actually kind of sad to say goodbye to the car.  It still smelled like my grandmother, but this was the best option for us.

Bringing Tara home from the hospital in the Mercury Tracer (yes I still look pretty pregnant at this point, but it is less then a week since I had Tara at this point).

You will be missed good old Mercury Tracer. Goodbye



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