Aiko: The Beast

“We got to pee!”
“Yeah, that was great!”

-Brittany and Rachel… respectively.

Now that you know the end of the story, let me start from the beginning.

As most of you should know by now, Aiko is the name of my car. She is a ’95 Mazda Protege with a 1.5 liter engine. Needless to say, I didn’t buy her for her power or off-road capabilities. But yesterday changed my view of her forever.

Jeff, Joy, Matt, Lani, Malissa, Brittany, Rachel and I were to go camping this weekend. However, Matt has work every other day for 24 hour shifts (He’s a firefighter) and Joy is 7 months pregnant. So we decided to go for a day trip instead. We left at about 1pm for a trip that Joy said would take about a half hour. Two hours later, we arrive a half mile from our destination, and the rest of the road was closed, so we hiked the remainder.

While there, we did the usual: climbed on rocks, chopped down a tree, played with fire, ate hot dogs, drank hot chocolate, had s’mores, etc. That wasn’t all that spectacular. The drive there and back were the memorable parts.

I drove Aiko, and Jeff drove his SUV. Upon arrival at our parking spot, Jeff and Matt informed me that I was “The man,” for making it through all the crappy dirt roads on the way there in such a small car. I was pretty proud of myself, but it was nothing compared to the drive back.

The drive back started with both Brittany and Rachel (My only two passengers) experiencing a little pressure in the bladder area. And for that drive, we decided that we would take a different road back for fear I wouldn’t make it up some of the hills we came down. The road we took instead was… indescribable. But I’ll do my best. The first trip was cake compared to the second. There were somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 “bumps” that tried to eat my car. Normal bumps make you slow down. I had to speed up for these bumps so we wouldn’t be stuck balancing on the top like a 1,500 pound teeter-totter. I bottomed out on most every bump. Luckily, the dirt was soft so I don’t think I did any damage to the bottom of the car.

In addition to the huge bumps, there were large holes (some of which I couldn’t straddle and had to navigate around or through), treacherous rocks to avoid, and “washboard” that was up to 6 inches deep with a foot between every bump. I had to stop a few times, and once had to get out and plan my route so that I would be able to take it fast and have enough momentum to get up the monsterous hill.

After all was said and done, Aiko was very dirty and has the spare on since I blew out the right rear tire. I’m not sure about the extent of the damage, since I haven’t really looked at her, but I’m pretty sure she’s in good shape. Aiko is now known as “The Beast,” and I as the one who would tame her.

After that crazy road, we found ourselves back on the road we started on, not two miles down. If we wouldn’t have tried to take a shortcut, we would have, in five minutes, travalled the distance that took us one and a half hours on the crazy road. All in all the trip took about 3 hours before we hit civilization and stopped for gas, which was probably the highlight of the trip for the girls riding with me. They ran in and relieved themselves as soon as I stopped the car. Then after we were back on the road, Brittany exclaimed “We got to pee!” To which Rachel replied, “Yeah, that was great!”

I have some pictures of the trip over at

2 Responses to “Aiko: The Beast”

  1. Benson Says:

    Wow… that tops my weekend.

  2. John Ambrose (jma89) Says:

    rofl … r.o.f.l. Isn’t that how it all works? At least you got a story out of the whole deal. And a great post. 😛

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