That’s when one of my soccer teammates got a new one for her birthday. My experience was different.
When I turned 17, my mom handed me the spare key to her old Dodge Caravan to say I could use it when she wasn’t ferrying around my siblings.
Even after I bought a sensible, affordable Honda Civic after college, the idea of a Wrangler has been stuck in my craw.
I’ve priced them hundreds of times — new ones, used ones, certified preowned ones.
I’ve scoured Craigslist and car websites, dreaming of driving one down to the Jersey Shore — an area about which I have written two books — wind in my hair as I cruised to the beach in the ultimate beach car.
But I told myself I couldn’t buy a Jeep. It’s not a sensible car.
My Civic was fine, and when it wasn’t fine, I’d just buy another two-door sedan because that’s the sensible, financially correct thing to do.
Well, screw that.
I’m a saver. I put away more than half of my income toward retirement and emergency savings.
I bought a house that costs much less than what I can afford. I even appreciate having a smaller dog because she doesn’t eat as much as a big dog would.
But as I looked at my friend’s 1999 tan, manual Jeep Wrangler Sport, I realized frugality should not be the rule for every part of our lives.
I have wanted this car since before I could drive.