Tuesday, May 24, 2011

We Named Our Car Sudoki

I confess, we are one of those families who name their cars.

Actually, it's all my husband's fault. He was the one who converted me into this curious practice. Though I'm not sure where he got it from but for as long as I can remember all the automobiles that have touched our lives and passed by our garages since we got married all have names. See, I guess it's one of the reasons why he endeared himself to me when we first met. I thought this was cute and funny.

And this is the story of how our cars get their names.

The first one was Ning-ning. Technically, she was not "our" car. She was my husband's car. He got her before I met him and I didn't get to meet her at all. Only in photos. By the way, you may ask how we figure out if it's a "he" or a "she"? Save your breath because I've absolutely no idea. It's like naming your own child. Sometimes you already have a name ready even before the baby comes out but sometimes you just have to meet him or her personally then you'll know what to call them, right?

Going back to Ning-ning. My husband told me how he picked the name for his car. He was a medical sales representative in the Philippines. He comes from the northern part of the country but because of his job he got transferred to the central Philippines. On one of his trips around town he said he saw the first pretty girl of the area. And yes, you've guessed it, her name was Ning-ning. Two things I have to say to that: first, he was either blinded by heat or starvation because all the girls from that part of the country are pretty. Second, we have not met yet at that time. Just saying!

I don't know how long Ning-ning lasted but I personally met the next car after her. In fact, I got to know her a little better. She was his car when we began dating. We even thought of making her my bridal car for our wedding. Her name was Ursula. I know what you're thinking, but no, I didn't help pick out that name. It was all him. If you don't know the famous Ursula from whom the car was named after, Google can help you with that.

A little after we got married, we got a new car. Ursula was sold to another family. But no worries, we still saw her around town parading her wares. And she was still in great shape for her age! Our new car we named Draco. He was named after the valiant and funny dragon from the movie DragonHeart. The dragon was named by Bowen (played by actor Dennis Quaid) after the constellation in the far northern sky. Draco the car was a faithful part of the family. He was with us as we started our new life. He was with us through the birth of our son. And the endless drives to school, to work, to the groceries, to the market, to grandma's house, and just about everywhere we needed to go. He never complained and he never let us down. Until it was time for a new car. We had to give him up. But we need not worry, he was staying with family. My Dad bought him from us.

The new car after Draco was also very special. Our son named him after his best friend at that time and which was also based on the car's license plate. The plate number started with XEF and my son's friend's name is Joseph. So he named the car Joxef! How cool is that? But we didn't really get to know Joxef as much as we did Draco. Not too long after we got Joxef we had to move to Chicago. We had to give him up. I still remember he was a very sleek, nice car with a clean, rubbery smell of new leather inside. My son was so sad on letting him go. I can't blame him. He named the car after all.

Then we're in Chicago! What an exciting time for our family. It felt like we're starting a new life with new beginnings and endless possibilities. But I wouldn't lie, it was also a bit scary. Homesickness was something I've never felt before because I haven't been away from home and from my family before Chicago. We traveled and vacationed to different places but we eventually went back home to stay. The first year when we first arrived in Chicago was the hardest. I was so homesick that everything I touched seemed bland. It was like the opposite of King Midas and his golden touch, but just as terrible! I missed my family, the environment and culture I was so used to all of my life. And I even missed the pollution! But God has been so gracious and merciful. He is true to His Word when He says He will never leave me nor forsake me. He was my comfort and peace during those moments of sleepless nights (primarily brought on by jet lag) and loneliness due to the physical absence of the people I love. I was so thankful that I had my husband and my son with me during those trying times because without them I would have flagged down a 747 at the O'Hare airport just to go home to the Philippines.

And even getting a new car in our new city was very exciting! The thrill of the car hunt itself and the unfamiliarity of buying in "unknown territory" made the experience so different. Then it was time to welcome Tin-tin into our family. She was a good car and was in very good shape. We liked her a lot especially during that first year in a new city where we wanted to get around, tour some and get to know our neighborhoods and the suburbs. Sadly, on one gloomy, cold afternoon in the Fall of 2005, Tin-tin conked-out. I wouldn't go into the details of her demise but I should say it wasn't her fault. She was just a victim of circumstances and people's mistakes. She is still with family until now but no matter how hard my brother-in-law tries to revive her to her old self, she will never be the same again. But life goes on...

And of course we had to get another car after that. This time, we were more confident with the process. My husband chose a Suzuki Esteem with a great heart. We named him Sudoki. A name combo based from the car's brand and from my husband's favorite pastime, the Sudoku game. And how we love that car! It's been almost 5 years since we got him but he is still going strong. His outer appearance might not be too attractive when parked beside those shiny, sleek ultra-modern, uber "green" cars we see on the roads today but he is family. As long as he brings us from point A to point B with no complaints, we're happy to have him. We're the kind of family that sticks together through thick and thin, through potholes and burning rubber. Ha.

I love sharing the story about how we name our cars not only because it's weird and funny, but it kinda reminds me of one of God's powerful promises. He says in His Word that even before I was born, He already knew me. Even as I was still in my mother's womb, He already knew my name. I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139). This truth is so amazing to me. I once was lost and now I'm found. I was nameless but He made me His own. And I can't thank Him enough. Our car stories also remind me of another one of God's promises: that even our family, a sinful, finite and imperfect bunch of people, knows how to love and to take care of inanimate objects like cars, how much more shall the perfect Father in heaven love His children and take care of His own? (Matthew 7:7-11).

We love our cars that's why we even give them names. They're part of our family. We are sad when they get "sick." I know it's crazy but my husband even speaks to Sudoki sometimes. If we can feel this way about family and cars, I can't even begin to imagine how much love God feels for all the people He died for. All we need to do is to love Him back. To accept His selfless offering of grace and love. I love Him because He first loved me (1 John 4:19).

Does your car have a name?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...