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Car Friends

I don’t just like my car, I love it. She represents freedom and independence -- an escape if necessary. She keeps me warm or cool. She plays music for me, connects me to the rest of the world and accepts all my gadgets without question. Long road trips in my car by myself help to rejuvenate my soul. Many question my sanity or sincerity. They can’t imagine several days on the road with nothing more for company than a conglomeration of metal, plastic, and wire. They just don’t get it. I must also confess to being one who names her car and talks to it. I pat her dashboard when she gets me through a forty below morning even though her tires are square, and she growls upon starting. I even believe she’s loyal. A few weeks ago my Spiffy hesitated now and again when I tried to accelerate. As this was unlike her I mentioned it to Honda’s technician on her next maintenance check. When they drove her into the bay she jumped and skipped all the way. The technician was horrified and wondered how I had managed to get to the dealership. Yet she hadn’t given me so much as a hop all day, as if she refused to let me down until I drove her to where we needed to be (turns out the squirrels and chipmunks were feasting upon her sensors and wiring). Anthropomorphism at its worst? I don’t care.

In Monstrum Book 2 Time After Time my main character Harry also has a vehicle except hers is a spaceship, perhaps more aptly described as a sports version. Former enemies the Karlonians designed and presented it to Harry in thanks for her hard work as the Earth’s Ambassador. They named the little ship SharTa in honour of their name for Harry and imbued it with her DNA which gives the little ship a kind of sentience and a definite personality. SharTa has a preference for the Beatles and often communicates through their songs. On several occasions she comes to the aid of Harry and friends. Because she is part Karlonian and part human she bridges the communication gap and becomes particularly important when an advanced species seems bent on Karlonia’s destruction.

While none of us, as yet, has a sports space craft, most of us can identify with having a special vehicle at one time or another. A vehicle which turned out to be dependable no matter what you put them through; or maybe not so dependable, but that was half its charm. A vehicle that did more than just get you from point A to B, and somehow you formed a bond with it. My special car is no longer with me. I have her newer version though, and she may only do 0-60 in 8.8 seconds and be limited to 143 hp, but she’s proving to be as dependable and special as her predecessor -- more than a car, more like an old friend.

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