Looking back on the past can be a tricky thing. Hindsight always has 20/20 vision, and it can be hard to know how decisions will work out without possessing a crystal ball or the ability to travel through time. But while regret often comes with negative connotations, it can be useful if a lesson can be learned from a specific mistake or error in judgement, even if said mistake is more perception than reality. Just don’t let it consume you.
My biggest regret? Selling my 1997 Mercury Sable. This car carried me all throughout my secondary and post-secondary educational experiences and beyond, and was proudly adorned with the parking stickers of each successive school. I learned the importance of having good tires when I almost rear-ended a pickup truck rushing to my first day of community college one rainy morning in the fall of 2005. It was a comfortable highway cruiser that shuttled me to various misadventures in New York and the Northeast with nary a complaint.
The cloth seats were amazingly comfortable. I found the column shifter oddly satisfying. The interior was always aesthetically pleasing to my senses. I was going to emulate Top Gear and make a couch out of the back seat when it had to go the junkyard.
Then the devil’s advocate kicks in, and I’m reminded why I don’t wholly qualify this as a regret. After all, it was a 16-year-old car that spent its entire life in the Rust Belt, and it was starting to show on the rocker panels. The passenger’s-side tweeter would buzz quite frequently, possibly because it was blown, and the seals around the driver’s-side door let in quite a bit of wind noise. Most importantly, I just didn’t want to sink more money into it after nine years of ownership.
So what do you lament, CC readers? A vehicle you should have kept? A car deal you passed up? A modification that didn’t work out as you had planned? A mechanical issue you failed to diagnose that backfired horribly? Let’s see your stories below.