The Jeep Is Clean….For Now

Finally we had a day last week warm enough to clean the Jeep. It’s been awhile, although what accumulates under the front and back seats and between the seats and the console pretty much typifies the chronicles of my travels.

I first took the old girl through the car wash. I’m careful to not choose the wash with the dryer because all that forced air reeks havoc on the Sirius antenna affixed to the roof just above the hatch. It’s warm enough that the doors won’t freeze shut, so the dryer isn’t necessary anyway.

Soapy water drips down the inside of three of the four windows, the seals weak after 14 years. No biggie. It helps dissolve the pupkiss smears.

Being mildly claustrophobic, the carwash is exhilaratingly creepy. This is a touchless carwash so it’s not as scary as the ones with the big rollers and brushes that feel like they’re crushing the sides of the car. Nonetheless, I’m enclosed in a car enclosed in a garage with water crashing all around me and I find comfort in the side door of the garage with detailed instructions on how to escape: 1. Open door. 2. Walk out.

I’m less than impressed with the vacuum, but I assume its lack of robust sucking action is due to the temperature. I don’t work well in 32 degrees either. Yet there’s enough power to suck up the bird seed in the back that spilled out from the bag that broke three months ago, and it does a fair job on the pieces of road salt, dirt and purple Hershey Kiss wrappers on the floor of the drivers side. From under the seats and between the console and seats I pull out and throw away: three apple cores, four banana peels, two Starbucks cups, four water bottles, two Ziploc bags, a yogurt container, three plastic spoons, one fork, an empty Altoids box, three empty blister packs of peppermint berry Trident, at least 20 tissues (most containing a wad of gum), 10 napkins, and the WalMart bag I originally put in the Jeep to use for garbage. It was empty. Oh, and I found my Niagara Falls coffee mug.

Lest you think me gross and rather piggish, I keep my house very clean. My Jeep, on the other hand, is utilitarian. I put a lot of miles on her in a week and I eat a lot of fruit and chew a lot of gum (and Altoids, too, obviously). I use it to transport my dogs to the vet and the groomers, too. It’s seldom that I take on a passenger and when I do, I’m at least courteous enough to make sure all the junk is stuffed under the seats. Classy, I know.

It’s not easy being a front-seat passenger in the Jeep despite the trash because the Sirius radio wire dangles in front of the dashboard on the passenger side. Sirius assumes their subscribers all drive stretch limos. I once tried to tape it down, but boxing tape doesn’t hold well in extreme heat or cold. Based on the fact that no one regularly rides with me, I made an executive decision as master of the Jeep to just let it dangle.

It’s now a week later and the Jeep, I’m happy to report, is still clean. I’ve thrown away every apple core, every banana peel, every yogurt container and every piece of Kleenex. This happens all the time, though. Soon I’ll turn back into the hedonistic slob I am, at least as far as the Jeep is concerned. I’m pretty sure I’ll finish off that pack of Trident that’s in my purse sometime on the trip home from Pittsburgh tomorrow and, well, it will no doubt end up stuffed between the console and the seat.

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