I never thought hitting 50 would be this bad. In fact, I hit 51 and the thought of going higher repulses me.
Before you think I am about to slip down a slippery slope of age-angst, let me stop you right there. The 51 I am talking about is the $51 it cost me today to fill up my Grand Am. For the first time during the ownership of my wheels I cracked the $50 dollar ceiling for gas.
What a site I must have been. I was in my morning daze as I filled up at the nearest Shell when I had my gasoline epiphany. When the gas stopped rolling and I looked up at the gas pump, I saw the number 51 and could not believe it. Today’s price was also a personal milestone at $1.20 a litre. My astonished gaze must have been similar to those of slot-jockeys at the casino when they hit triple-seven on the Blazin Sevens machine, thing is, I did not feel so lucky.
I know SUV, van and pick-up drivers have been cracking the $50 barrier for some time now but I have been merrily guzzling up gas below the $50 barrier, rather oblivious to the fact the 5-0 threshold was closer than I thought. $51 for a fillup which will last me about four days is hard to swallow. Basically, my gas bill now offially hit the $200 plus threshold for the month at this rate, a hit this reporter’s budget cannot take.
I had promised long ago, as gas approached a buck-a-litre, that whenever I started to hit $50 fill-ups I would have to re-evaluate my driving habits. That time arrived today and I did not have a Tim Hortons to wallow in, just crawling morning traffic. The options I reached so far to beat the gas-bar blues are as follows:
– start taking transit to work everyday (could be tricky since a one-way trip via car is 24 kilometres from home and would require travel across two different transit systems)
– take transit to work two or three days a week (besides the above mentioned distance, without a car I become an immobile reporter- not a good thing for breaking news)
– buy a new, smaller, more fuel efficient car (this introduces a new payment into my life-not cool)
– get a new job which is directly on a transit line closer to the city
– get a second job and make the money made there go into a “gas slush fund”
– carpooling is out of the question, no one lives around here from my office and frankly, commuting with the strangers on transit would likely be a safer and saner thing to do for me.
So, what will I come up with to beat the $50 plus trap? Have any of you changed your driving habits, patterns or transit ways in order to beat rising gas prices? I will keep you updated on what I discover about my above mentioned options.
In the meantime, what has worked for you?- let the Ondeadline readers know.