My family has a long history of naming cars. I don't know how it got started, really. It's just something we've always done. As a kid I remember Blanca, the white Chrysler that happily toted us and the hibachi to the beach. My mom kept that hibachi in the trunk all summer long, to be ready whenever the opportunity struck for an improntu picnic. There was a Buick, whose name I can't recall. Then there was the lemon of a Dodge Caravelle, whose name quickly became P.O.S. It was a real rattle-trap, but did manage to transport my sister safely to New Mexico before dying an inglorious death.
I've told you about my cars before. My first car was the Chrysler Cordoba, a gas-draining behometh that could easily take ten of my friends cruising. He was named Juan, because of course a Cordoba deserved a Spanish name. We had a Suzuki Samurai (Suzy- very original, no?) that was a lot of fun in the mountains and for tootling around town in summer with the bikini top (on the car, not me). And of course, you know all about Arnold and his unfortunate mishaps.
Here in Italia we become the parents of Guido, a dependable little Fiesta who was miraculously resurrected from the dead to serve us well for another year. But he is now good and truly infirm and we can't expect him to live much longer. His doctor even said costs will outweigh the effort.
And so we went in search of another car- something reliable, economical, with good gas mileage. Bryan will fill you in on the search and procure mission. I didn't have much of an opinion on make and model. My only stipulation was that it not be gray. The vast majority of cars in Italy are gray, for some strange reason. It makes it difficult to find the sucker in a parking lot. And it's just so...boring.
We went to Rome to pick it up, catch up with our dear friends, Giorgio and Francesca and see their son (my fratello Romano) Valerio perform in an open-air venue. All the way back to Basilicata I tried to identify the personality of the car and give it a name.
Like my parents when they named me, it took three days to decide. It just didn't look like a girl to me, so we at least decided on gender. But then the names...well, Italian names often have a way of sounding kind of elegant, noble even. This car is a working-stiff kind of car; an average Joe. I also couldn't give it any of the widely diffused names of the region. There are just too many Antonios and Micheles already, and besides, someone might take offense. They already think I'm a little weird for naming the car in the first place. There was a bit of debate, most of it in my own head because Bryan tends to not give a dang. His family has no such tradition.
In the end, we decided on Enrico. Here he is - the new kid on the block. He's kinda cute, don'tcha think?