Car shopping is exhausting, and strangely unrewarding. We started the day with a list of dealerships that seem to have a car we'd like to see. The first one was to take a second look at a car we like, but have reservations about. We still have them. The dealer shrugged patiently.
The second place we didn't even end up driving the car because the guy only had one plate, and it was out with someone else. We waited for fifteen minutes and gave up; he never even came out to the lot. Guess he thought we were poor prospects.
The third was one of the big name dealerships, and I think we learned our lesson about never going to those places. It was a fascinating textbook display of hard sell tactics, and he put on a thoroughly astonished expression when we informed him rather bluntly that we were not planning to buy a car then and there no matter what he said (they did give L a balloon, so we got that out the day...). In fact, we have no intention of ever buying any car from these guys.
Six hours of driving around the state and looking at cars ate up way more energy than it seems like it should have. The kids were reasonably well behaved throughout all of this; there was a distinct "I want to go home" vibe by the time we got to the third place, and I felt some of it myself. I was tempted to go the takeout route again, but instead made Pork, Cashew and Green Bean Stir-Fry (with sugar snap peas instead of green beans). It's hard to go too far wrong with tenderloin, and this is a good, no-frills recipe, perfect for nights when you're dead on your feet.
Today, I hope, we're going to make up our minds. Next time we'll try to time the whole thing better; the pressure of either getting it done now or it waits until after vacation is not making this any more pleasant. And maybe we won't wait until the car is on its last leg before we start looking.