Thursday, August 14, 2008

Lost Identity

Lost Identity?  No I didn't have my credit card stolen, or social security number, or other important identifiers...but I did lose my car honk and with that my identity.  ***If you are confused right now just keep reading and I will explain!***

We have had our van for a couple of years now and I absolutely adore it!  One thing about it that I did not adore was the obnoxious honk.  Those of you who have spent a significant amount of time around me are laughing right now because you know how loud it is!  If you were unfortunate enough to miss out on the heart attack inducing honk that my wonderful van possessed I am sorry.  Those of you who are still laughing, because you know how much I complained and also can attest to the obnoxiousness (is this a word? Richard if you ever read this let me know) of the honk know what I mean.  If you are still in the dark I will share a few "honk" stories.  

First, I must back up and explain a few things.  So this honk has driven me crazy for a few years and Richard said he would fix it for me by looking at the manual.  Yes, he was busy and it did not get done for quite awhile so I had to learn to adjust to my identifying honk.  Being the mother of two small children, I did spend lots of time in my van and thus locking it (which produced the honking) quite frequently.  I became used to it and felt the need to warn people around me that I was going to lock it so they would not be scared.  If I had been able to capture the look on their face when I would loudly announce in the parking lot of Target that I was going to honk my car I would post them here.  Then to see their reaction once I did lock it and they were able to experience the honk was often amusing.  Occasionally I would be in a hurry and forget to warn the innocent bystanders (which I also waited to lock it until I was a large distance away just in case) and someone would say "What the? That was the loudest honk I've ever heard."  Sometimes I would play along saying "I know, some people are so rude!" or just give my poor van a dirty look along with the stranger in awe!

My dream came true this spring when Richard did try and change my honk so that it was either quieter or would beep or just do nothing.  He read the manual and tried to change it, only instead of the car allowing him to chose a more pleasant option it protested and would not only honk when I locked it but also when ever you shifted in or out of gear!  The next day Richard was going to try and change it back, but we were in a hurry and I told him we better just do it later.  Bad idea.  So,  my punishment for impatience was driving my car around for another week obnoxiously honking while I shifted in and out of gear as well as locking it!  

During this week, I took a trip to Williamsburg (to the Outlet mall) with my boys for a day of shopping fun with mom!  A reward for the excellent behavior while following me in and out of stores all day was a trip to McDonalds conveniently located on the way out of the mall.  To my luck their was a spot right outside the front door of McDonalds when we arrived.  We went in, enjoyed our lunch, and then got into the car to head home.  So it was 2pm (past the boys' nap time), it was hot, I was crabby, so were they, and I was in a hurry to get them strapped in and in the car.  After my Olympic record shattering time getting them into the car and strapped in their seats I jumped into mine, buckled up and shifted out of gear....right as an elderly man with a cane who could hardly move let alone walk passed right in front of my car.  This poor man jumped higher than he probably had in years and raised his fist at me and proceeded to tell me that his "ticker isn't in the best shape as it is and I almost gave him a heart attack with that dam honk" (if that doesn't make a girl feel good I don't know what does).  I apologized and quickly drove away while thanking the Lord for not taking that man from this Earth because of my honk. Although I am CPR certified, I didn't want to have to use my trusty dusty skills on that man.   

Needless to say Richard changed it back that night!  I also must add that some of my coworkers came to know my distinct honk and if they happened to be parking in the ramp at the hospital at the same time as me would know this despite being levels away!  

When we moved up here in July, my dad took the van out to Dahlstrom Motors and had the guys out there look at it.  Eventually it was determined that the manufacturer was not responsible for the obnoxious honk, but someone else added it. (Thus the reason poor Richard was never able to remove it).  So, they were successfully able to remove this and Richard changed the locking option so it doesn't make any noise. 

Yahoo right?  Well, so I thought, but actually I miss that darn heart-attack inducing, head turning, mouth dropping, obnoxious honk.  It had become such a part of me and although it technically followed us up here I feel as though I left my "honk" in Iowa.  Moving has been exciting and we are thrilled, but it has also meant change and leaving behind lots of wonderful people we loved dearly in Iowa.  I am looking forward to meeting to people, making new friends while maintaining our Iowa friendships, but they will never know me as the mom with the honk.  I know I can make friends without my identifying "honk" and I will continue to drive my lovely van without it, but it won't be the same.  

Would I change it back if I could?  Maybe?  Isn't that why hindsight is always better?  Since I probably won't, I felt it would be therapeutic to write about it and lift my bowl of ice cream to the obnoxious honk.  So here is to my lost identity/new identity and change.

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