How It All Started

Friday, August 8, 2003

It was the usual Friday night routine. I came home late after slot car racing, and sat down next to my wife, Nancy, for a little while. I like to wind down after racing. After she was done checking her email on the laptop, I took it and checked some of my Ebay searches. One of the items I stumbled upon was a 1973 Volvo 1800ES. We weren't really actively shopping for a car, but I like to see what Volvo 1800's go for on Ebay.

[Flashback to "Volvo at the Glen" - June 2001. We had had our 1971 Volvo 1800E for about 8 months when we went to this event. Nancy saw a 1973 1800ES wagon that she wanted to buy so we could do the his/hers Volvo thing - she really liked this one because it was a blue/green/teal color, unlike most of the Orange or Red ES's that you usually see. This particular car was NOT one I wanted to buy, nor was I ready to take on another classic Volvo - so we let it pass. But ever since then she's had it in her head to someday get an 1800ES for herself.]
So, back to the car on Ebay - if you haven't already guessed - it was that same blue/green/teal, or as Volvo simply called in it 1973 - Blue. (Volvo paint code 115-1.) This seemed like a nice car at first glance. She got all excited, so I fired off a few questions for the seller. I also asked on the Volvo 1800 list if there was anyone in Denver who could check out the car for me. I had no idea how serious my wife was at the time, but I was playing along.

 Saturday, August 9, 2003

I get an email from Carl Johnson who offers to check out the car for me. I check with the owner, but he's not available until the afternoon of Sunday, August 10th… But I found out that the owner and Carl made arrangements for Carl to come check out the car that Sunday afternoon.


 Sunday, August 10, 2003

Now my wife is getting completely stressed out. "Her car" on Ebay is getting more bids - up to $4,500 already. Around dinner time Carl calls me and we discuss the car. I decide that it's worth the Buy-It-Now asking price of $6,495, and we have just bought ourselves a 1973 1800ES wagon - one that we have never seen or driven, and is on the other side of the country. We contacted the seller, and sent them a 10% deposit via PayPal. If this transaction goes smoothly, we would pay the balance through PayPal as well.

  During the course of our discussions over the weekend (mostly because Nancy was getting over-anxious), we had already decided that for the price of shipping, we could fly out to Denver and drive the car back.
  Then our daughter finds out what's going on, and SHE decides she wants to come too - I explain to her that the ES back seat isn't really any better than the back seat of my 1800E - but her desire to see the country wins out. I agree to let her come along - I have a feeling I'll regret this later…
  Arrangements are made, airline tickets are bought, and we now have a plan in place. We fly to Denver on Saturday, August 16th. The sellers graciously agree to pick us up at the airport and drive us to their home so we can pick up the ES. After spending one night in Golden, we will then leave Denver on Sunday, August 17, and drive back to New Jersey in 3 days. That leaves us 2 days before we leave home again to attend the International Volvo Expo in Niagara Falls!
   As Dr. Sam Beckett would say, "Oh Boy!"

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