Thursday, May 20, 2010


Joanna over at Fifty Factor wrote a post the other day that was so fun.  She recounted how she got her first car and what kind it was.   I loved reading it.  It made me think back to my first car.  She named her cars, but I never have really.  Although Buster was driving Little Blue Thunder when I met him.  He names his cars sometimes.

I can not find a picture of my very first car, but here is what it looked like except for the wide green stripe.

  I found this picture on the internet of an original advertisement:


My first car was a 1977 Datsun 200sx.  My dad and I bought this car in 1984 during my sophomore year of college.  So it wasn’t new, but it was a great car and I loved it.  It was sporty and fun.   I remember the top of the back cloth seat was so faded and sun damaged.  You could poke your finger right thru the fabric.  But I didn’t care.   It got me thru the years of college that I attended and then  I rolled into Atlanta at the ripe old age of 19 ready to start working and a new life.

One morning on my way to work, I was in the middle lane of I-285  that loops the perimeter of Atlanta, GA and my car just quit.  It was 7:30 a.m. in rush hour -  bumper to bumper  morning traffic.  I was petrified.  I had no idea what to do.  This was before cell phones of course.  I could not even get to the shoulder of the  road.  I got out of my car and put the hood up and got back in and started crying. 

I remember all I could think of  while I was sitting there in my broken down car was the traffic report on the radio.   I just knew I  would be the one they were talking about.  I would be the one that was making a half million people late for work in Atlanta, Georgia that morning.   TEARS!

Anyway, this wonderful trucker (God Bless him)  came to my rescue.  He stopped his big rig right behind my car and got out and looked at the engine.   He immediately spied the problem.  One of the battery cables had popped off the battery.  He put it back on and tightened best he could by hand and my car cranked. I was so relieved and off and rolling again.  I looked under there too but I guess thru the tears I couldn’t see the dangling battery cable. ha.  I’m such a girl…I’m sorry.

Not too long after that the clutch went out.   I know it was normal wear and tear, but I started thinking I needed a newer car that wouldn’t break down on me.

So in 1986 I  headed out to the Nissan dealership by myself and found the car I wanted.  I fell in love with it. The headlights rolled up at the turn of a switch.  I felt so cool.   It was  a 1985 barely used 200SX, but now it was called Nissan and not Datsun.   I negotiated with a saleslady as I recall.  She was as new to selling cars as I was to purchasing them.   As we finished the negotiation I had the dealership call my dad in Florida and tell him everything they were telling me so I wouldn’t be making any huge mistakes. He felt like they were making me a fair deal so I drove off the lot in the first car I purchased on my own.  With the help of 48 month financing…. 

Here I am the proud owner of my first picked out and purchased myself car:

Joy's first car 1986 (2)

I wrecked this car (my one and only wreck so far) back in 1987 just  before Buster and I got engaged.

I was fine and it was repaired, but it was never really the same.    We continued to drive it for about a year after we got married and then traded for another car in 1989. 

So there you have it.  The story of my first car(s).

How about you.  I’d love to know about your first car.



Betty said...

That was really interesting! My first car was "our" first car, which we bought just before we got married. It was a 1967 Chevy Malibu, bought used from my uncle for $300! :) It was not something to brag about, but we had no money and it got us to where we needed to go. Wow, that brings back so many memories! :)

Joanna Jenkins said...

Hey Joy, Love the car stories and that trucker! What a nice guy he was to stop in all that traffic to help. I never thought about be the reason for the traffic jam on the radio report but if it had been me, I'd have cried too!

Thanks a million for the shout out.

Have a great weekend,

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Oh My Goodness Joy... I learned to drive on my parents 1950 Pontiac. I didn't have a car in college --but when I got married, we bought a two-tone Ford Fairlane. We bought it used --so it was probably about a 1955 model. It was tan and white. We loved it --and drove it for quite a long time.

Great post, Joy, and I loved reading about your first cars. I can only imagine getting stuck in Atlanta traffic. Yipes!!!


Melody said...

It was an old Subaru. My mom bought it for me for $500 in 1988 - even then $500 meant "clunker". I think she liked it so well because it meant I couldn't get too far away from home w/o it over heating LOL!

Love your cars! :)

Susan said...

I'm not believing this!!! I owned a black, 1983 200-SX Datsun, with a sunroof. I drove it off the show room floor new and LOVED that car. Not my first, but had to share this. Mine was a Datsun, before they became Nissan.

Tracy P. said...

What a fun post! My first car was a '72 Buick Electra. It had been my mom's car, and she sold it to me for $300 is 1984 (she would have loved to give it to me I'm sure but couldn't afford to). I called it my "luxury liner". It had all the bells and whistles, but it just wouldn't run. And got gallons to the mile instead of miles to the gallon. No small amount of heartache with that car! Made me SO appreciate reliable transportation!!

I had my van stalling out this week in rush hour traffic. Still in the shop, but thankfully I was able to get it into a parking lot. We were close to the garage, and Lee was able to drive it there. Gonna be expensive, but it's got 120,000 and has hardly cost us anything up until now.

Givinya De Elba said...

What a great post! Thanks for the smile, Joy!

Louise | Italy said...

Just take a look at that 1980s hairdo! I'm sure we all had one - I know I did, although I didn't have a car until two years ago in my doddering 40s...

Davedda Marshall said...

A small world, isn't it? Glad you "found" me on my blog and on Facebook! And, guess what my first car was?!? A 1987 Nissan 200SX!!! I got it for my 16th birthday and was so sad to sell it after I had my first baby!

Floss said...

Wow! Our first car was a VW Beetle, which Ben decide to buy from a flatmate when we got engaged. He decided that we could own it together before we got married (we were students, and I was living in Hall so I didn't need a car much), and in fact we went off on honeymoon in it some months later! It was bright yellow...

Berni said...

Always an uplifting comment from you thanks for still sticking around especially since I have not been blogging much lately.

C said...

ahahahhahaha!!!! oh my gosh!!!!

Okay, when I had my first car, it didn't have a name. And it was red. Ten years later, it's painted black, and it's named "Trusty Sr." The "Senior" part came along when the new black car was bought and got named "Trusty Jr." .... hehehehhe! ♥

Vava (aka Virginia) said...

Ahhhh, memories. First car: a blue Impala. I got it (early) as I was the oldest of 3 and mom was a divorcee. (scandal in 1968!). Great fun in that car...taking girlfriends to school, after-school-cokes at the local diner; wheelies in the snow. Oops...

Pamela said...

How fun! Lets see, my first car was a hand me down from my mom. It was a navy Renault. It broke down like every day and I was so mad at my mom for selling it to me. Many a not so nice conversations had over that stupid car. I only had it a few months though. A week after high school graduation I totaled it. Ran an red light that I did not see at all. Thankfully nobody was hurt and thankfully that was the only car accident...knock on wood...that I have been in that I have caused. My next again was a hand me down from my brother in law. It was a Mercury Topaz and the only thing that worked on it was the cruise! It lasted a few years but on its last leg I traded it in for my very first new to me Forest Green Toyota Corolla. We had just swapped keys at the dealership when somebody came in from outside and asked whose trade that was out there smoking! Ha! No seriously that really happened! They only gave me $500 for her anyways. I loved my Corolla though! She was a peppy reliable economical car that we had till we paid her off and then she was traded to my mother in law for her Maxima which The Hubster drove.