Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Retirement Checklist Item - Porsche 911

The road to the 911 for me, has taken 55 years and has not been without pain.  In fact this last week leading up to the acquisition included shoulder surgery, so to say that it was painful is an understatement.  For five days leading up to the pickup, I was not sleeping anything longer than a 60 minute block - up every hour with a locked up, painful shoulder.

The 911 has been on my radar for at least the last 20 years. My wife and I have had two Porsche Caymans and loved them both. She actually prefers the look of the Cayman (this will change, I bet) but the 911 is simply the car that everything is judged against. That puts it at the top of the engineering heap for me.

I’m an engineer. I engineer; build; troubleshoot and fix things. Man made items of engineering excellence get me excited.  Imagine what goes into an Omega watch. The engineering is incredible, yet you can acquire it, understand it and touch it. Porsche has an amazing history and produces that same level of engineering in its products. To the nth degree, the car is engineered. Every switch, knob, button, curve, material, component is perfectly engineered and works together in a perfect harmony with it’s counterparts. Just like the watch.

Did you know the 911 was born in 1963, just like me?

My newest and most favorite son-in-law Brent was to be my accomplice on this journey, and in fact had negotiated the deal for me.  She was sweet – a 2017 Porsche 911 Carrera, perfectly optioned and sitting in a guys garage with 1300 miles on the odometer. Brent got the price down to 25% off MSRP, which seemed like a perfect deal. With the pending arrival of the 2019 992, the timing was perfect.

The plan was to pick up Brent at 6 am on Saturday morning in Venice, and meet the seller at Porsche West Broward at the east end of Alligator Alley. Great – no need to drive into the Miami area.  Friday night is exciting but painful.  I can’t sleep.  Awake in pain at 10pm, 11 pm, 2am, 3am and finally 4am. Then BLEEP, it’s a text message from Brent: “I’m awake”. 15 minutes later we’re rolling towards Miami.

Audi TT on the Alley

We’re in my 2017 Audi TT, what might be the best value in sports cars ever. It’s an amazing car, and we make it to Alico Road in Ft. Myers before we need to find coffee and there happens to be a Starbucks (normally my last choice) open at 5:15am. Coffee, poop, breakfast sandwich and we’re back on the road. 

Brent on the Alley

It was Brent’s first time across the alley, so we stopped at a few recreational areas to look for gators. The everglades are an amazing ecosystem.  You realize it most, when you’re down in them. We end up at Porsche West Broward only 45 minutes early, but they’re open so we get to gaze at the 5 GT cars they have roped off.  Designer coffee and breakfast snacks all served by the best smelling people in the world.  Wow, what a dealership.

Porsche West Broward

Rudy (the seller) and his wife show up on time, and I get my first glimpse of what will become my retirement trophy. The car is immaculate. We complete our transaction; say our goodbyes and head back to Sarasota.  Uneventful.

Before we get too far into the trip home, we stop at another recreation area and put some film on the front of the 911 to eliminate the road rash.  This car will not see too many highway miles once it’s in Sarasota so any prevention here is worth it’s weight in gold. Two and a half hours later we’re back home with a nearly perfect 911.

The family should thank me. I’ve just gone from the hardest person to buy Christmas presents for… to the easiest. Huge thanks to my wife Julija for all of her support and love that led us to this place. Thank you God for the riches and Grace you afford a sinner like me. 

Isn't she lovely?