The VW Van
This was Sammi's VW Van, but we bought it from her so we could dispose of it and give her the money for her trip to Ohio.
I had had this van gone over with a fine toothed comb, making sure it was in great condition. The Beaverton VW shop had been given a blank check to fix anything that was wrong, and they did about $3000 worth of work on it for me. I hated to part with it for less than $2500, but it turned out I would have been lucky to get a dollar.
I tried selling it through the Oregonian, then through CarSoup.com. Finally I got an email from a gal in Minnesota, she wanted to fly out to Portland, buy it for $1000 and drive it back to Minnesota. It ran pretty good, I commuted to work with it occasionally, so I told her it would probably make it IF she could drive a car with a clutch. Sammi and Drew had previously burned up a VW Jetta clutch, so I stressed to this little gal that she had better get really good at driving a car with a clutch.
Well, she flew out to Seattle (to her Dad's house) and came down with her Dad and boyfriend to get the car. She had spent a few minutes with Daddy's car learning how to drive a manual transmission. I let her drive the van around the block and she was pretty bad, but she insisted she would get better. I threw in a free GPS navigation unit to help her get across the country, gave her an extra gas can, a bunch of tools, everything she would need. Oh, and she didn't get AAA like I told her to.
So she took off at 4:00PM on a weekday to drive North to Seattle, with her Dad in his car. This of course was the worst part of the commute. I figured they would be OK, but about an hour later I got a call, she was stuck at the Zoo, her Dad was long gone (they didn't have cell phones). I drove up there, she had burned up the clutch in the bumper to bumper traffic on the Sylvan grade. We got it towed to the Beaverton VW shop, and after watching her bawl her eyes out I gave her $1000 cash back to her, even though she had signed the bill of sale accepting the "As Is" terms. She would need this money to get her and her boyfriend back to Minnesota.
The next day I drove to the VW shop and told the owner I couldn't stand it, please take it off my hands. After months of trying to sell it, and now this Minnesota gal crying her eyes out, I just couldn't take it anymore. He accepted it graciously, and probably made money off it too. Good for him.