My Open Letter

Submitted by Hannah J. McDonald
on 03/07/18

College is a stressful time for both the student and the parents. There are a lot of decisions to
be made. Some are big decisions: Which school to attend? What major to pursue? How will the
tuition be paid? Some are the details that make the transition more comfortable: Live on campus
or off? Buy a meal plan or not? This is an open letter to my parents in the hopes of them
allowing me to transport my car from our garage to my future dorm room.
Dear loving parents,
As you prepare for empty nesting, I urge you to also prepare for an empty driveway.
For the past two years, my car and I have shared some really excellent moments. We have
trudged to work at my two jobs early on weekends and sped to school on weekdays. My vehicle
has lugged everything from groceries to siblings to costumes to science projects all over this
town that I have grown up in. My rearview mirror has seen more than just the car behind me; it
has seen tears of stress, laughs of joy, and a few very bad dance moves. It has kept me warm
on icy day trips, and cool on summer adventures. It has functioned as a changing room between
rehearsals, a classroom before AP exams, and a dining room on lunch breaks.
Now, the time has come when I will leave all those memories, this life that I have lived for the
past 18 years, behind. Now, it is time that I become an independent adult, making my own
choices, and choosing my own road. Except, no matter what highway, freeway, interstate,
bridge, or backroad I take, I can not imagine it not being in my sweet Honda Civic. Sometimes,
leaving everything behind is not always the best answer. I need my wheels to take me to the
places I want to travel.
As you know, I am seriously considering attending Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. As a
car-friendly campus, having a vehicle on site would make the transition much easier. Lynchburg
is much larger than Durant, our hometown. Switching to having to rely on public transportation,
already in the midst of a sea of cultural and lifestyle changes and shocks, would leave me
restless and add additional unnecessary stress. This kind of stress could take a toll on my
grades and social life on campus.
Liberty is more than 1,000 miles away from home. I know that it would worry you sick to let me
drive the almost 18 hour trip by myself, so I have looked into A-1 Auto Transport. This company
allows you to ship your vehicle domestically for a very reasonable and hassle free transaction. I
have already taken the initiative by downloading the free A-1 Auto Transport app onto my phone
and requested a quote from A-1. Within 30 minutes, I had emails and a phone call from
professionals who were eager to transport my Civic! Talk about fast action! For less than $800,
my car could meet me in Virginia in less than a week. That’s door-to-door service with insurance
included! A-1 seems very reliable! It has off-the-charts reviews and quality guarantee. The A-1
website even allows you to get price comparisons from similar companies, to ensure that we
receive the best deal for fulfilling this need.
The steps are very simple.
First, I will need to clean my car inside and out (like you are always begging me to do!). With it
all shiny, we will need to document that little scratch on my back trunk- you know the one I got
the first time I drove myself to my dance competition and had to drag my heavy suitcase of
costumes and dance shoes out of the trunk all by myself. I will have the inside of my car cleaner
than you have ever seen it! All my CDs removed. No loose change rattling around. And, A-1’s
website also says to have the gas tank on empty- just enough to get me to the pump in Virginia.
Well, you know me and you know having an empty tank won’t be a problem. Next, we will need
to check my Honda’s battery, tire pressure, and fluid levels. Dad, maybe you could help me
check for any leaks? I don’t think I have any, but I’d appreciate your help. The side mirrors need
to be folded in to protect them. And, finally, my car alarm will need to be disabled before I hand
my keys to the driver. How easy is that?!?
I know transporting my sweet Civic would be a little more expensive than me driving, but let me
break it down for you. Yes, my car gets great gas mileage, and I have figured that it will take
around $75 in gas to make it from our house to the university. But, there is no way I could drive
all 18+ hours in one day; I might be able to drive six hours a day without risking my safety.
Therefore, we would need to figure in at least two reputable hotel stays along the way- $200.
Plus, my meals- my body will need fuel, too! Even if I stop for only fast food, nine meals will add
up to no less than $80. And, Mom, you know I will need snacks every time I have to may a
bathroom pit stop! So, to be safe, let’s add another $50 for snacks and slushies. After we add a
few twenties for a t-shirt and the magnets I gather along the route… we are looking at $445,
plus the wear and tear on my car and all of our sanities as I navigate this huge journey all on my
own! I do not want to start my school year already exhausted! And, one of the reasons for the
added expense of transportation is because you know that the big truck hauling my precious
Honda does not get near what my car would get in terms of gas mileage. But, can you really put
a price on my safety and your peace of mind?
Please consider all I have asked and let’s do this! Let’s trust A-1 Auto Transport with my baby
so, your baby, can start this new college adventure happy and grateful not only having her
own wheels, but also for having awesome understanding parents!

Submitted by Hannah J. McDonald
on 03/07/18

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