Deja Smaug

The Polytroposmobile is a 1992 Toyota Corolla. When I stuck my head in it just now, I was hit by a staggering sense of deja vu. It was the smell. Something car-ish about it, to be sure, but also something a little musty, a little old. Not old-car faux-leather smell, but whatever smell the stuff makes that car seats are made out of that isn’t faux leather. It was dignified, somehow, and more than a little comforting.

And I just realized why — it’s the same smell that Smaug had. Smaug was my college car, a white 1979 Chrysler LeBaron with a red interior, a noisy engine, and a whole lotta room. A car of legend. The Corolla (whose name is Peter Quince) doesn’t quite measure up, but now that it has aged into such a hoary, noble odor, I think I’ll like driving it just a little more.

This also means that P.Q. is as old now as Smaug was when I first got him. I can’t quite figure out if that makes me feel old or not.