Road Warrior

Saturday, February 11, 2023

At last, after months away for repairs, my old Jeep is home again. It was built in 1988, has nearly a half-million miles on the original engine, and runs like a top. Its demonstrated toughness makes my Jeep model a favorite of aficionados. Unfortunately, Jeep gradually stopped making new parts for it. As a result, old Jeeps like mine, but discarded, are plundered for repair parts. My mechanic has trouble finding the correct replacement parts, used but okay. So, repairs can turn into lengthy, expensive, and sometimes iffy projects.

These days, while my Jeep is running well, I ought to sell it. The red paint has faded, and the worn body is bruised, but the model remains desirable, at least for parts. I hesitate because its a good size for my older, arthritic dogs to climb into independently, and it has the cargo space to carry all my dogs at once. That’s not all; I’ve driven this Jeep for nearly twenty years, and silly as it is, love the faithful old beast.

Too soon, a parts scarcity problem will grow beyond that of trying to keep old Jeeps in running condition. More electric cars are on the roads and are precursors to an onslaught of highly automated, electrified vehicles. As a result, we are about to be forced to change our decently-running combustion engine models for new plug-in and battery-powered types. The quickness, completeness, and inevitability of this are astonishing to consider.

Dear Friends: We’ll have to learn to be aware of cars coming toward us silently. Diana

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