I have problems with cars. Or, more specifically, some entity has a problem with me having a car and punishes me with an abnormally high number of car problems. I no longer have a car it Italy and I find this kind of nice.
Since I first had a car:
Attempted thefts: someone tried (and failed) to steal the Chevy Lumina I shared with my brother. They succeeded in pulling the ignition out but that was about it.
Major breakdowns in the middle of nowhere:
1) My car broke down on the highway between Wilkes-Barre and Pittsburgh. Strange men in camo overalls offered to take me and the two girls with me back to their place "for motor oil".
2) My car broke down again on the highway between W-B and Pittsburgh, this time alone. A guy pulls over and gives me a bag of marijuana.
3) My car died completely in my move from Chicago to Wilkes-Barre. I was driving with a Uhaul trailer (carrying all of my stuff) on the back of my car and right around the midpoint of my trip, the car stops going on the highway. I call for a tow and they manage to get my car and trailer to some small town in the middle of Ohio. I spend the night in the Econo Lodge (classy) and the next morning get the rather unfortunate news that my car has a busted transmission and will not make the rest of the drive. Now I have a car and a trailer with everything I own and no way to get back home. Trying to figure out how to deal with all of this was like one of those puzzles where you have to get things across a river on a raft (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/River_crossing_puzzle). Except every time I figured out a solution, something happened that made that solution impossible. My final solution involved me driving my car (with a broken transmission) 30 miles away to pick up a Uhaul truck with a car dolly, hiring movers to my stuff from the trailer to the truck, and returning the Uhaul trailer. Then the tire on the Uhaul truck popped as soon as I got to the house in Wilkes-Barre. Worst. Move. Ever.
Idiots running into my parked car:
1) People in Pittsburgh ran into mine numerous times. To the point where I lost both side view mirrors and had my passenger side door bashed in. All on different occasions.
2) When moving from Evanston to Chicago, I was planning to use my car and had rented a Uhaul trailer to move myself and my new roommate (Megan!) to the new apartment. The night before the move I watched from my window as a carjacker, fleeing the police in a stolen vehicle, crashed into a bunch of parked cars...and then spinning around to come crashing into mine. Oops. Some frantic calls to Uhaul later, they gave some beat up old truck for my move and the insurance company gave me a rental car (which got a flat tire and was almost hit by a falling tree branch).
3) Just for fun, I had a plain old hit-and-run last fall. I went outside to find that someone crashed into my car damaging the tire, the door, and the sideview mirror.
And that's just the major problems. Interestingly (and thankfully), I've never been in any accident when I was driving the car. So, I'm actually quite glad to not have to worry about having a car in Italy :) No worries about street cleaning, digging it out of the snow (and dibs, oh my lord, dibs), or what to do when someone crashes into it or it dies in the middle of nowhere :) :) :)
Some people have suggested that I should get a Vespa to cruise around on but I have a feeling that would just lead to me crashing into things and injuring myself. I'm accident-prone enough as it is :)