“Men should be like gyms,” a Park Avenue Power Lawyer, breast-cancer survivor and mother of 2 grown children advised me. “Conveniently located.”
This is a rather good criteria, and it’s true that of late, real estate has been a deciding factor in romantic endeavors. When I discovered the guy I started dating last summer had an apartment on the upper east side, a stone’s throw from the Met, a block from my favorite Italian market, across the street from my doctor, and directly above a restaurant with the best gnocchi on the planet, I was sold.
Mr. UES had a small handful of things going for him, but the location of his apartment — the fact it wasn’t in Brooklyn and came with the opportunity for a proper pied a tere in my most frequented neighborhood — persuaded me to ignore the inclining that this was a poor match and thus helped lock him in as my one and only.
As our relationship progressed into the winter, I made it a habit to bypass public transportation in favor of driving to his apartment. For the last 10 years, I’d been driving my first car. It was a compact SUV, invaluable in schlepping artwork around the Hudson Valley and I’m convinced it could drive my favorite routes through Manhattan by itself. I knew its time was limited, but it was a car built to last… and it would have, if it wasn’t for my ex-boyfriend, the Major Deegan and global warming.
If you were living anywhere in North America this winter, you’re well aware of the havoc the cold and snow inflicted on the roadways. The drive to his apartment was riddled with sinkholes, most of which were hidden by poor street lighting and other vehicles. The drive to Mr. UES’s apartment on snowy winter evenings bent the underbelly of my beloved FreeLander in half.
And then, in the coldest heart of winter, we broke up.
Not only did he refuse to buy me earrings for Christmas and never took a duster to his furniture, he broke my car.
With my 4-wheel companion for the last decade deemed irreparable, I started shopping for a replacement. It was time for an upgrade.
It was the day I settled on a Ranger Rover Evoque that I met the foreign athlete turned PhD engineer and agreed to dinner. A new car. A new boyfriend. It felt like upgrades all around. Needless to say, I got over the broken car and the broken heart in the time it took to sign the paperwork.
Not. So. Fast.
2 weeks into my new car, and it was being towed out of the supermarket parking lot on a flatbed. A part was faulty. I couldn’t get it out of park. 2 weeks into life with a loaner car, and 4 weeks into our romance, Le Monsieur showed his true colours.
I was paying for a car I didn’t have and I had already ended two relationships before the end of the new year’s first quarter.
It seemed my upgrade came with a virus.
But luckily, viruses usually can be treated. Just in time for my 3rd month’s car payment, the dealer called to tell me the new part had arrived from the UK and was replaced. I could come pick-up the car whenever I was ready.
So now, a few months later than I planned, I have my new, twice upgraded car. It’s a silver Ranger Rover Evoque with black leather interior. It has a push start and heated steering wheel. The panorama roof comes standard. The soundtrack heavily featuring songs like “Diva” and “Bad Girls,” and “Fancy” is driver-supplied.
If you ask nicely, maybe I’ll take you for a ride sometime…