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Buying Your First Car - Memory Of  A Lifetime

long with other "firsts"-- a grade-school love, a kiss, or the first slow-dance with a special someone - the new car holds a place of honor. Enshrined in a private wing, it represents one of the most rare and valuable pieces in the entire collection. Wrapped in original emotion, it remains unchanged by time; each, the memory of a lifetime.

Standing in the gravel behind the pavement of the dealer's lot, she mingled with the plain fleet cars. Like a shy schoolgirl at a dance, she waited in the shadows beyond the powerful lure of spotlights. Even in the unflattering light her beauty was striking. No question about it, heads would turn in her presence. The man who won her heart would indeed hold a prize. Something stirred within a soul.

The invoice posted in the window confirmed expensive tastes. To have and to hold her would require more than mere words of commitment. To truly possess her would cost everything--a high price in a world full of choices. The lights of distant lots beckoned.

A search of dealerships uncovered a host of other beauties awaiting revue. On well lit lots they pranced and strutted with the practiced charm of showgirls on stage. Flashing their finery, they passed in endless parade shouting bold proposals; "No money down! Low monthly payments!" But none compared to the shy beauty waiting quietly in the shadows, her image a haunting vision on a sleepless night.

Daylight reveals unimagined loveliness. Long graceful lines and subtle curves create a picture of stunning beauty. Her richly jeweled dark jade finish glistens in the warm sun. Well-accessorized accents verify her refinement. From gently sloping grillework to finely sculpted rear end, she is every inch a lady. A beating heart quickens.

Squaring off near her shoulder, a man in a tweed sport coat appears suddenly. Like an overprotective brother screening suitors, he approaches, questioning intent and honor. Apparently satisfied, the man unlocks the door. A respectful distance is maintained as introductions are made. It is a pleasure to meet.

Changing tactics, the man begins listing her many virtues. "Tilt steering AM/FM Dolby stereo with cassette dual front/back speakers built in multi-directional antenna air conditioning glove leather 60/40 split electric seating fully adjustable for individual comfort power windows and door locks cruise control rear window defrost electric moonroof…" Circling, he points out other features which he finds attractive: "…hand painted pinstripes dual racing-style side mount mirrors all-season Goodyear steel belted radial tires with raised white lettering radial tuned suspension fully rustproofed and guaranteed for five years or 50,000 miles!"

Nervous smiles are exchanged. Breathing becomes more labored as a pounding heart pushes blood to reddening ears. There is no longer any question about others. No other could possibly satisfy the desire that has been awakened."She'll bear your children and carry groceries or a trunk full of heavy luggage," the salesman continues, patting her rear with an air of too much familiarity.

An outstretched door beckons, welcoming closeness. Skin innocently brushes skin. The feel is soft and silky smooth. The subtle aroma of her sweet perfume thrills heightened senses. "Go ahead and climb in," the man in tweed suggests.

Supple leather seats, the color of doeskin, invite a gentle touch. Overhead, a velour canopy surrounds a rectangle of pale blue sky. Tanned nut brown with curly maple woodgrain trim, the dashboard contains instruments deposited in hope of such a day as this. The odometer reads 10.4 miles. Others may have snuggled in the well-contoured seats; they may have taken her away, out of sight of prying eyes, but they never got far. Only one would truly capture her heart. To one, she would give everything.

"Why don't you take her for a ride?" Patch pockets surrender the keys. "Go on. Get acquainted. Introduce her to your family and friends. Go on, she doesn't have to be home for quite awhile."

Seat and shoulder belts hug lightly the first time. Adrenaline, pumped by an overcharged system, rushes through every muscle. Nimbly she two-steps into traffic, moving her lithe body confidently through the crowds. Dancing close, she expertly responds to the lead, swaying gently to the rhythm of the road. Cool air whispers in warm pounding ears. Desire, swelling to a crescendo, keeps pace with the throbbing bass of a heartbeat. Love demands to be satisfied.

In an afternoon, decisions are made and plans quickly develop. It is not a long courtship, but the romance will continue; such love will last through time and eternity.

As in the ancient Eastern tradition, haggling over a bride price begins. An offer is made followed by a counter-offer. Observing shallow breathing and the flush of excitement, Tweed Jacket remains firm. Love has been exposed. A deal is struck; a thousand camels change hands.

From the corner office, another man is summoned. Dressed in a charcoal grey suit, he arrives to pronounce his blessing. A shiny new key ring, solemnly placed in an outstretched hand, symbolizes the exchange of vows. The parchment document, signed and witnessed, makes the union official. With a squeal of delight, the honeymoon begins.

Years later, doors sag and squeak. Her fine finish, dulled by the sun, no longer glistens. Leather, once soft and supple, now appears stretched and wrinkled. The dance has slowed; time has taken its toll, but promises made "till death…" are not quickly forgotten. Love still sees the young beauty full of charm and grace. It is a memory that will last a lifetime.