Cars in remote locations

A challenge in living in a remote community is what to do about transportation.
Before we moved full-time to Seaview- I owned a Landrover. You would think Landrovers are a good car for beach life- afterall, they go on African Safaris- right? Wrong. Service for Landrovers is nonexistant in rural areas. Sure- the local guys can work on it- and after putting in an ENTIRE NEW ENGINE FROM ENGLAND- (probably due to something the inexperienced local mechanics did) you figure the 2 to 5 hour trip to civilization- where the service department can be rude to you- is something you might actually put up with. That is your penance for buying an English car.
One day last Sept- while driving back from Seattle with an entire car filled to the brim with campaign signs.... my little beloved Landrover Freelander convinced me of the wisdom of local car maintenance. A few days later- we were off to the local Ford dealer in Astoria.

I decided that a Ford was a good choice. The most important consideration being- local service. I also justified the purchase with- it was on the lot, we got a good price, it is cute, I like the color, etc. I wanted to buy American- gosh the auto industry is in trouble- it is the right thing to do. I had no idea we would fund a bailout- (don't get me started- on with the story).
Fords have a history in remote communities. The photo above with all the girls -is the car owned by Miss Dorothy Elliott. Her parents built our home in 1905, she later inherited it. Miss Dorothy ran Camp Willapa- a girls camp up in Nahcotta. I figured that if Miss Dorothy parked her Ford on our very driveway- I could continue the tradition.
Another reality in living at the beach- to get anything- you have to DRIVE more than a few hours. This is not good when my BRAND NEW 2008 Ford Sport Coupe had a total mechanical failure with just a few thousand miles on it. Long story- short summary. 1. I am not happy with Astoria Ford at this time. I will refrain from posting how completely upset and angry I am with the way they communicate and how they will say about anything, how unhelpful and rude they were in my time of need...etc. I will be fair- and should they do something to redeem themselves- I will post a happy Astoria Ford post- but at this time... my recommendation is to drive to Longview, WA and go to Columbia Ford. Trust me. My dissatisfaction also has to do with some other experiences with them since the time we signed on the dotted line. 2. The 'Tone Ring' was defective- fell off -or something that resulted in my car being undriveable. This isn't a pleasant experience when one is in the middle of a very busy intersection and hours away from home. (and in the evening) 3. Social Networking in the form of Twitter is very helpful when you want to seek information and help. Ford happens to twitter. Finally- after some rather interesting Ford bashing tweet conversations- I received a call from Ford Executive Office and they have impressed upon Columbia Ford in Longview the importance of a timely repair for me.

The last photo is from the local beach here. See the ship mast? A nice day to drive on the beach and check out the shipwreck.
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