Did you know “milestones” or distance markers have been used for centuries? Like since the ancient world. Romans used them on all the roads they built. But other empires used them too. The Byzantines. Islamic civilizations. Dating back to the 1st century AD.
I guess early on we all wanted to know where we were and how far we needed to go.
Speaking of the Romans, the Roman Empire really was known for their construction projects. Aquaducts, coliseums, and most notably… roads. Damn if they didn’t construct an ancient interstate system. And they were built well. Many are still around and serviceable today.
And you’ve heard the phrase “All Roads Lead to Rome”? Well:
Anyway. This is sort of a rabbit hole post all triggered by my crossing the 100,000 mile mark in my FJ cruiser this past Saturday on my drive home to Iowa. Actually, I hadn’t even made it as far as Lakeville (last suburb south of the cities) when I hit that mark.
I bought the FJ used, but it only had like 28 or 38k miles on it when I got it. And since I do really kind of love it, I definitely wanted to see it cross 100k— and beyond. FJ’s are kind of known for their owners putting on 200-300k or more. They are pretty hearty vehicles.
It’s interesting how the vehicles we own king of act as milestones in our personal journey.
I have always been kind of a car “whore”. Changing vehicles when I get bored or antsy and am looking for a change. I can only think of one other car that I’ve had where it had over 100k miles. It was a P.O.S. Honda Civic hatchback. Old 80’s model, before the cooler design change. You know the kind— looked like a Chevette or other boxy hatch of that era.
The thing topped out at 80 mph when floored. It wasn’t even really mine. It was “mine to use” after my dad got rid of my first car when I went off to college. Man that pissed me off. I was given a car when I was 17– my fathers old one— and I loved it. Like capital L loved. It was the car that I learned to drive a stick on.
I came home from college my freshman year and it was just gone. Dad said it was falling apart and needed to go. Didn’t even ask me— just junked it.
So then I was left with “Step Mom’s Honda”. Which had over 100k when I got it. I drove it to and from work in summers and occasionally to college. Parking a car (as a student) in Chicago was a nightmare so I didn’t take it to school often.
Then it was a used, 1991 Acura Integra. Red. Aka speed ticket magnet. Dad helped me buy it as my first car after college. It served me well through Grad School and into my first job.
Then it was a mid 90’s Acura Integra. White. I had that one into my second job— taking me to North Carolina. I kept it until 2002, when I got my first MINI.
Damn, I loved my 2002 MINI Cooper. Black, with white wheels, white racing stripes, white mirrors, and a white top that was checkerboarded. For looks, that car was a 10. But man it was a lemon.
I cycled through a few more Coopers. And mixed it up with a Subaru Impreza wagon at one point. That one only lasted like 3 years. I love Subarus, but they just aren’t sexy enough for me. Except the older WRX’s, but I wasn’t going to spend that much money.
And then came the FJ, which I’ve had for like 4 years now? Maybe 5? The pandemic has fucked with my ability to mark the passage of time.
I still get “new car fever” occasionally. The FJ is tall and rear wheel drive, so slick roads can sometimes be dicey feeling. And fuel economy isn’t great. And maintenance is starting to cost serious $$$. So I look.
But the damn car shortage and new vehicle prices are outrageous. Plus I hate all the new car “gadgetry”. I don’t want a fucking touch screen and digital everything. It’s just more shit to go wrong. And most new cars are devoid of style. I can’t tell a Mercedes from a Hyundai.
So I guess we’ll have to see how much farther the FJ takes me. Right now I’m decently content to motor onward.
Perhaps to 150k….