Fifty Shades of Red SUV

 I kept a secret for half of last year, but now it’s time to let the secret escape.

In September of 2016, our beloved Ford Focus fell victim to a guy trying to turn into traffic with the setting sun in his eyes. We replaced it with what became equally beloved, a 2014 Ford Escape, which I call burgundy but which is technically ruby red.


I cannot conceive of why there have to be fifty shades of red. When I became a volunteer firefighter, we had several fire trucks that were red. We had one that was burgundy. That’s it. The names of colors never made us hungry.

Anyway, this car had a backup camera and a computer screen, neither of which I saw any use for, both of which I now wouldn’t do without. We drove that car all over everywhere. Well, four states, anyway, and about two dozen state parks, not to mention Chicago. Don’t get me started on Chicago.

It always amused me, how many ruby red SUVs we noticed on the road after that. Probably just the bias of us having one, but it seemed like we saw them everywhere.

“You get a ruby SUV, you get a ruby SUV–you all get a ruby SUV!”


When it developed a very small radiator leak I wasn’t too concerned, until nobody could find the leak. I mean nobody, including mechanics and the dealer. Then one of the spark plugs started acting up. Then everything started acting up.

We drove it a LOT, mind you.

But estimates for fixing the problem, assuming we could figure out what the problem was, brought us into the “nickle and diming us” phase of car ownership. We needed a new car. Emily started researching, and I looked around.

Do you see Emily? I didn’t–I almost got into the wrong car.


We found a car that was a heck of a deal, if we were willing to drive some distance to look at it. We did. We looked. We fell in love.

Much to our surprise, we drove back home in a different car than the one we’d left in. Having learned my lessons, I embraced the changes that came with a vehicle five years newer. It has so much extra safety equipment that the insurance cost actually went down.

It also has heated seats, and a heated steering wheel, two things I used to make fun of. No more. The screen showed us where we were and where we were going, and the computer could connect our phones (audio book, yay!), make us hot tea, warn us if we were approaching a politician with his hand out, and even play the radio.

And it had remote start.

Whoever invented the remote start needs to win the Nobel Prize For Awesome.

As we headed home, I suggested to Emily that we play a little game. “Let’s not tell anyone we bought a car, and see how long before anyone notices.”



You see, we replaced the ruby red 2014 Ford Escape with a ruby red 2019 Ford Escape.

The photo above shows them together–the new one’s on the right. We took the front license plate off, but there’s still a considerable difference in the front. In the back, not so much.
A few of my family members noticed right away–nobody else did unless I pointed it out to them. After all, someone else’s car is not something the average person pays close attention to. Still, it was a lot of fun having the secret.
It was also a lot of fun seeing my speed in kilometers per hour: The car comes from Canada.
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2 thoughts on “Fifty Shades of Red SUV”

  1. I think you were robbed.
    ALL politicians have their hands out.

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