Gertie's epic journey

When we were in Canada a few weeks ago, my grandma was kind enough to lend us her car. This saved quite a bit of money on rentals, however, it was a unique sort of car and the roughly 40 hours of driving in it will forever go down in my memory as a one-of-a-kind experience. 

After driving her to visit some friends in Vancouver, we were discussing this incredible car in all its bright teal splendour. Naturally, because I liked naming stuff, we were throwing around names and Gertrude (Gertie for short) came up. Thus, Gertie was christened. 

We drove her on the 14 hour trip from Victoria to Grande Prairie (and back), a journey filled with the Okanogan desert (one of the hottest places in Canada), one hyperactive little brother and one junk-food eating dad (which was a problem because [insert very long and unnecessary backstory here]). There was no air-conditioning, and when you rolled down the windows they didn't always roll back up. 

(This got us into significant trouble when we were on the ferry. Dad rolled down the window to pay, then parked in line to wait to board. He went to roll his window back up, but it didn't budge and we sure didn't want to wait in the car for the entire hour and 45 minute trip so that no one would break in through the open window and take our stuff. He ended up shutting her off, turning her back on then rolling the window up a centimetre. Turn off, turn on, up another centimetre. Wash, rinse, repeat.) Oh yeah, and there was a cassette player. An actual cassette player

Because the Okanogan was so hot (30-35C) and we didn't have air-con, I got heat exhaustion on the first day. Once I realized that I was indeed sick and not merely carsick, I spent the rest of the day with the window rolled down, hugging/drinking a cold bottle of water as we sped down the highway at 110km/hr. Thankfully, I learned my lesson after that. 

At every house we rolled up to, people commented on Gertie's splendid bright teal colouring and the fact that she would be considered an antique in a few years. We also sort of got laughed at. 

But despite the lack of air-conditioning, the interesting colour and sheer age, Gertie got us through. She didn't break down once, and she pulled along faithfully and got us where we needed to go. Thanks, Grandma, and thanks Gertie. 

Have you ever driven in an interesting car for a long road trip? What was your first car like? Have you ever broken down somewhere? 


  1. Wow, I really like Gertie's color. That's really cool. My first car was named Lulu and she was also blue, and nice. I really liked that car. I'm currently on my second car and interestingly enough my car broke down last month at the library and my dad had to come and rescue me. XD

    1. Ha, thanks! Lulu sounds like an excellent name for a car. And there are definitely worse places to break down than at the library!


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