Congratulations to Warren on the selection of his
Miata, as our November
Miata of the Month!
My wife and I purchased our first Miata in May of 1998. It was a new '99 and we were so very proud. However, we had never purchased a true sports car before and had never owned a convertible. We had read a review of the car in the local newspaper the day before and decided on a whim to buy the only one left on the lot the next day. Not being a spontaneous sort of guy, this was a major break from tradition for me.
The decision at first seemed a bit risky and certainly impractical. The salesman assured us that the car was meant for FUN and was known for its extraordinary handling ablility. After making the purchase, I decided time itself would tell me if this little car was really the master of the road that the salesman said it was.
Not long thereafter, I discovered Miata.net and began reading about rallies and the such. I spotted one at Deal's Gap in the Smokies. The road there was advertised as being a challenge to even the best handling machine. In addition, this would be a nice opportunity to meet others who had bought Miatas. After some deliberation, we decided to attend.
It was great to see all the Miatas and their owners at the Gap. And indeed, the road was as much of a challenge as advertised. 141 Miatas traversed the Gap on Sat. morning in what turned out to be a wonderful ride for all. However, I was still a bit reserved about really challenging my new car. Did it really handle as well as advertised? Perhaps I would find out at a later time - after I had more confidence in my own rather limited driving abilities. As it turned out, that time arrived much sooner than anticipated.
My wife and I decided to depart the Smokies around 3:00 A.M. on Sunday morning to make the drive home. Our return route took us right through Deal's Gap itself. Needless to say, there was absolutely no traffic at that time of night so I couldn't resist the temptation to take the curves just a tad faster than the previous day. After all, what could possibly be on the road at that time of night!!!! After rounding one of the challenging curves in magnificent fashion, my prophetic wife asked me to slow down a little. After all, she said, "we might encounter a bear or something." I chuckled at that suggestion since I had never seen one of the beasts in the wild in my entire life. Nevertheless, I decided to take her advice. Well, we rounded the very next curve and lo and behold there was a huge black bear sitting square in the midddle of the road. I hit the brakes and went into a mini skid. There was no shoulder to our right, just a deep foreboding crevice. I used every evasive driving maneuver taught and brought the Miata to a sudden stop about one foot from old Smokie. He got up from his startled slumbers and lumbered off into the woods.
My heart was in my throat and we were both speechless for a few seconds. Upon recollecting myself, I straightened out the Miata, thanked my wife for her great advice, and agreed never, never to doubt the incredible maneuverability of a Miata again.
This close call is one I shall never forget. I am just glad to have
a little car called the Miata which fits so well on tiny roads with little
extra space. It just proves once again that "BIG IS NOT ALWAYS BETTER."
Will you be next?