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Streaky, the little car that could

Patrick Davies’ column to the Free Press
Patrick Davies bids farewell to his 2006 Hyundai Santa Fe ‘Streaky’ in this week’s Paper Quips. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)

It’s a funny thing, saying goodbye to your first car.

For those readers who don’t know, I’ve spent the past three months looking for a new car. My old one, a loyal 2006 Hyundai Santa Fe, developed more mechanical issues than I was willing to fix, so I went looking for a new car.

After a few weeks of looking with help from family and friends, my coworker Deb sent me a link to a 2008 Honda Civic being sold practically next door to me. Thanks to its relatively cheap asking price I jumped at the chance to buy it, after a few false starts.

Now is it my dream car? No. It’s certainly a serviceable vehicle, and apart from a lingering smell and the driver-side window being permanently stuck up, I have no real issues with it.

I’ll admit, however, I didn’t expect the nostalgia that came with replacing the Santa Fe, otherwise known as “Streaky” thanks to a streak on its bumper.

As I said at the start, this was my first car. I bought it from my parents five years ago after graduating from SAIT Polytechnic, only a few months after earning my driver’s licence.

At the time so much was riding on me having a car. If I wanted my summer internship at the Spruce Grove Examiner I was going to need a car. It’s no exaggeration to say Streaky helped me get my foot in the door when it comes to journalism.

Not to say things were perfect. That summer — maybe two months after I bought it — I was sitting in a parking lot, having lunch with the AC blasting, when my car died. My dad had to drive out to give me a boost and it turned out the battery was about dead, needing a replacement. It was my first lesson on the many hidden costs of owning a car.

Later, when I got the chance to work at the Williams Lake Tribune, it was Streaky I loaded up with my possessions, with some help from my parents and their van, and drove to B.C. It ferried me around from interviews all across the Lakecity and later around 100 Mile House.

Despite the costs of replacing the battery, the windshield, parts of the brakes, and all the other little costs over the year, Streaky never broke down on me. It kept on trucking despite my utter lack of mechanical knowledge.

Last month, when I took Streaky for our final ride down to Kamloops together, I couldn’t help but feel an era of my life was ending. A bridge between my childhood and adulthood is now gone. My subsequent cars will never have that connection we had.

So here’s to Streaky, the little car that could. You will be remembered fondly.

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Patrick Davies

About the Author: Patrick Davies

An avid lover of theatre, media, and the arts in all its forms, I've enjoyed building my professional reputation in 100 Mile House.
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