When Q and I decided that I was going to move up to Fairbanks, we had some logistics to work out. The first being about a car. Since Q drove his own car up here, the Army would pay for a car to be shipped from Los Angeles. My first thought was to just ship my car. I have a 2008 Toyota Prius which I love. Great gas, easy to drive, built in GPS, all around a good car. The problem with bringing the Prius up is the dreaded winter. My little tires can hardly handle the rain, how will they handle the snow? And what about the engine when it gets to be -30 degrees? We had seen maybe 1-2 Priuses (is that the plural for Prius?) in total up here before the move, so I was worried that they were not very Alaska friendly.
So Q and I started to look into cars to buy instead of bringing the Prius up. For a while, I was pretty set on a new Jeep Cherokee. And then magically on his way home from work, Q saw a Prius driving on the highway. And pretty much like a stalker, he followed it until it got off the highway and parked. And then Q got out of his car and casually pretended that he was going to the same place the driver was going. Following the stranger, Q said “Oh a Prius, how does that do during the winter?” and the driver explained that it does great. It is front wheel drive and with some heavy duty snow tires it’s perfect. And that decided it. Instead of Q and I spending money on a new car, we would just ship my car up and pay for snow tires and winterizing it. See in Alaska, you need to winterize a car. Basically they install an engine block heater with a power cord hanging out the front of your car and you have to plug it into an outlet every night to keep your engine warm. Fun times, I know.
The whole process of shipping the car was so easy I couldn’t believe it. The Army does it right. I dropped it at a shipping place about an hour south of LA. It traveled on one of those big car carriers up to Seattle then hopped on a ferry all the way up to Anchorage. From there it was on another car carrier to Fairbanks and on Tuesday, 3 weeks later, it arrived. So far it’s been great to have my car. People stare that’s for sure. Not only because it’s a Prius, but because it has California plates. We are taking to get it winterized next weekend and once we see snow, we will buy some heavy duty tires. The only issue is that apparently Toyota’s GPS doesn’t recognize Alaska, so my map screen is empty (BOO!). The good news is that Fairbanks is a very small town, so I can’t really get too lost.
I’ll keep you posted as the weather turns nasty how the car holds up, but for the time being I couldn’t be happier. Next up? My things! They should be coming up in the next 3 weeks. Finally! I’ve been living out of a suitcase for what seems like forever.