New Castle News

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April 12, 2012

Tim Kolodziej: Thanks, old friend, for plenty of miles and smiles

NEW CASTLE — It was an emotional moment.

The odometer turned just as I did, distracting my focus, so a bright new beginning nearly turned into the end for a beloved friend.

I pulled over and looked down. Here’s what I saw:


How cool is that?

My 1999 Honda Accord had reached another milestone.

Another car company has been airing a wonderful commercial along those same lines (watch it below), and it has fueled my memory reflex back to some of the unique and special occasions that have occurred since we purchased our brand spankin’ new vehicle. Here are but a few:

•A new millennium.

•The horror of 9/11.

•Multiple trips to Three Rivers Stadium and the Civic Arena, which later morphed into visits to Heinz Field, PNC Park and Consol Energy Center.

•Bringing home our newborn son from the hospital.

•Taking our daughter to the hospital for surgery.

•Two crashes.

•Three presidential elections.

•Our 10th, 15th and 20th wedding anniversaries.

•Twelve birthday parties for our daughter and eight for our son.

•Concerts by Paul McCartney, the Dixie Chicks, Harry Connick Jr., Sarah Groves, Amy Grant, Trans-Siberian Orchestra and John Mellencamp.

•Family vacations to Oak Island, N.C.

•Jaunts to Kennywood, Cedar Point and Idlewild Park.

•Hundreds of worship experiences at church and thousands of long days at work.

•Sunshine, thunderstorms, hail, freezing rain and record snowfalls.

•Two pet golden retrievers.

•The joy and celebration of weddings.

•The heartache and tears of funerals.

•And back home again, tucked safely into the garage at night.

I guess I’m feeling a little melancholy because yesterday I turned over another year on my personal odometer.

I still feel like a kid in a lot of ways — OK, a young man — but I know I’m showing a bit of wear and tear, too.

A little more rust than usual.

Can’t go nearly as hard or as fast as I once did.

Maybe you’re feeling all the miles, too.

But just like my Honda, we’re still fully capable. We can still show up on time, roll up our sleeves and serve our masters well.

We just need to be careful about the fuel we’re using, remain current with scheduled maintenance, stay out of the elements as much as possible, and keep moving.

Happy 200,000, my old friend.

Despite some headaches and heartache, we’ve had a darned good run together.

Here’s to many more miles — and memories — down the road.



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