Today as I was taking my daily break to gallavant over to my local Office Depot I began to reminisce about my very first automobile. It was a raw fall day with grey skies that had just started to pour out their fury onto the roads below. I woke up early before the rest of the town to become comfortable on the road. Her name was Bella (later to be the red rocket…not because of her speed, but the roaring sound the engine spewed when working to produce speeds over 50 mph). She was a 1991 red Honda Civic standard two door hatchback and I’ve never viewed anything more beautiful. I shared her with an older brother and sister, but once they ditched me for the big Apple she was all mine. On this first day out my nerves got the best of me. I stumbled and stalled, tried to start the car in third gear only to be caught in a fit of rumblings and vibrations. The day ended with a discouraged Marissa and my mom picking me up at the Mobil Station. I was soggy and slightly emotional but the next day I was ready to begin again. This day my desire for the open road outweighed my fear of it. And every day after this I was thrilled by the independence it provided me. Driving through country sides, by the ocean, soothed me and calmed me. To me the car was much more than transportation, but became my sanctuary. It brought me to friends, it housed my music, it soon became covered with clippings and photoes of my icons and interests. Beliefs were displayed on bumpers, excentricities hanging from mirrors. Driving that car made me feel powerful. It was a symbol of my independence. Pumping gas provided me with a feeling of satisfaction and achievement. A car is something different for everyone, a way to get to work, a way to escape from your home office (hypothetically), a status symbol, a way to compensate for your poor self esteem (achem hummer), but back then it was everything, it became and extension of me. Although I love my car now, probably more than most people, nothing compares to that first time I shifted smoothly into second gear, hair blowing in the breeze, tunes blasting to wash out the roaring engine, and most likely nothing ever will.