Tuesday, February 21, 2012

H to the Izzo

Someone killed Grover. There is no other explanation for it. Someone killed the Sesame Street character Grover. And skinned him. His hide was used to cover the seats of my car. Don't believe me? I have the pictures to prove it.
I love my car here. Rust bucket? Yes. Clunker? You bet. Precariously close to being good for parts? Maybe. A source of marital conflict due to it's regular need for maintenance? Absolutely.

Our Isuzu Trooper is nothing but a banged and dented character on 4 wheels. She needed a name that reflected this character. Katie, though her small Southern stature might not reflect it, really likes flashy hip-hop. So going straight to Jay-Z, she chose the name Izzo.
Our blog only really gives credit to the Izzo for her less than miraculous maiden voyage. A trip I won't recount but you can read about again here. I will say this for my faded blue chariot: it deserves better than that.

I will admit; she is not much to look at. Yes, the front bumper is at an angle from the previously mentioned first trip. Yes, it has more dents and rust than most cars in the junkyards of the USA, but this is Ayiti Cheri! There are many worse-looking cars on the road. Yes, her interior looks like a Muppet was massacred, but looks are deceiving. Right? Didn't Han Solo and the Millennium Falcon teach us that it's what's on the inside that counts? That might not have gone so well when the Empire was striking back, but in the end it all worked out.
The Izzo has a strange habit of getting to a destination, but taking her time starting once we have done our business there and are ready to leave. Once, I had a car full of friends and groceries and had to sit in the lower bowels of the Giant parking garage because the Izzo wouldn't restart. I think I have pegged the problem: a faulty battery cable. But you know what I said to all my friends?  "Get your own car and then you can criticize."

The en vogue thing to drive here depends on who you are. There seems to be some unwritten rule that says your skin should match your car color. If you are a blan, a new white truck lets the whole country know you are "here to fix things". It also says, "I have money! Stop me for a bribe or a robbery." Most of the well-to-do Haitian families have SUVs with darked out windows. Those dark and shiny cars say much the same thing.

But there is an advantage to a car that is so old it could be a senior in college or drink legally (if this country had drinking laws). I rarely get hassled in my car. The Izzo is no looker; in fact she is so hideous I joked to my students that street kids do not ask for me money in traffic, but instead give ME one dollar. The Izzo is all about function over form, and while I can find comfort in her homely form, I know she functions... most of the time.

1 comment:

  1. we can relate. We've been waved down as a tap-tap many, many times. Then people see that there are white people inside and just shake their heads and walk by. When rod is driving home you can hear our car from down the road...



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