Sunday, August 09, 2009

Goeckermobile - Japanese Edition

A "junker" here is a car that has less than one year left on the JCI (Japanese Insurance we must carry) and will require a lot of $ to fix before you can reapply for the JCI.

We were given a junker van. I had DREAMED of a small mini-van. I've been driving a 15 passanger van for 15 years. Over the years the Goeckermobile has been big and noticeable and I dreamed of fitting in with a sporty mini-van. This is our Toyota Hiace (either Hi ACE or Hi A Chee - not sure).


Note from this photo that it is quite a bit bigger than the other vans on the road. It has two sun roofs, which the kids love.

It seats 8....comfortably. It has lots of room in the back for groceries. The middle seats will slide up and lots of options for those with long legs.

It has lots of rust...through in some places....and it's long. It's a diesel and seems to get good mileage - though it sounds and drives like a tank.

I wanted to show this GREAT feature on the cars here. See the little plastic shield that says Hiace? This is a rain can roll down your window and not get rain in the car. Cool.

This is a great feature on bigger you can see behind you as the parking and roads are small and narrow.

This photo shows the climb UP into the front passenger seat. Mike and Jared simply swing their right leg up and hop in....but that step is awkward for me and I've not found a graceful way to enter or leave this van. I haven't a clue what it will be like jumping down on to ice in the winter.


Oh - it's 4 wheel drive.

What a blessing it was for us to be given this van. I hadn't a clue they came this big over here. We have been debating what to do about a 2nd vehicle. We thought about taking some of our set aside funds to buy a nice van. We have found them cheaper than stateside and readily available. We are Dave Ramsey Debt free livers. A car is one thing that WILL go down in value. Our home hasn't sold in TX and so we are not sure we want to spend that $ right now on a smaller, newer van. I would like something smaller for the roads here...and this one does have a smell we haven't been able to get rid of. BUT it's free....and we will sell whatever we have in 3 years, so its a silly time to be putting a lot of money into a car.

This one will require quite a few repairs before it passes JCI next year.....but we could junk it then. Someone buys them from you......and so we are are leaning, now, towards buying a second junker for Mike to commute in...and keeping this one for the kids and I for at least a year...... if we do decide to buy another van....we found one we like a lot for $3,500........we'll save this and bless other incoming large families until the JCI runs out. It's still all up in the air as we have the $ set aside to buy two cars....and it will take less than we set aside....but we aren't sure we WANT to spend the $ until we are settled in a home and the TX home sells.

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.

~ Coram Deo ~
Living all of life before the face of God...


Renee said...

How fortunate you can have two vehicles. In Seoul, one had to get special permission to own more than one..... that's why dh bought a junk scooter/moped to drive to work

Debbie said...

Great looking vehicle...and De'Etta...that does not look like a lot of rust! A couple of our vehicles have a lot of rust. Brian had to pop-rivet some sheet metal onto the side of our pickup last year before inspection. NY doesn't seem too concerned with rust unless it affects structural integrity.

DeEtta @ Courageous Joy said...

LOL Debbie....I didn't show the rust....There are quite a few spots where the rust goes all the way through to air....but it's FREE and it drives.....and they put salt on the road so rust is going to happen. LOL

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Free is FREE! And it buys you time.

Plus, sounds like you'll need some extra budget for fruits and veggies.

I was curious what you meant by "raw manure" in an earlier post. I don't know about Japan, but we knew some Koreans (here in America) who used their own.... hmmmm... human waste to fertilize their garden.


Japan is so ultra-clean, in general, that's probably not what they meant.

Beautiful pics of the park, above. Thanks for sharing your adventures!


DeEtta @ Courageous Joy said...

Julie - we haven't a clue what "raw manure" I said, I can't think of any other kind. ::snort:: I'll wash carefully. She said that they were telling folks to buy off base and then all the healthy produce eaters were getting ill. They tracked it back to that....not sure how and if it was as wide-spread as she made it sound. I was fairly grossed out - I was simply looking for a chicken to take home and bake. LOL

Anonymous said...


All the years we lived in the Philippines way down south, I put (don't everyone gasp :)..) clorox in the water I put rinsed anything we ate into. Bellieve me everything. Of course I then washed everything EXTRA well in straight water. Any kind of manure is a good fertilizer... so...... yuck! I just didn't let folks who were visiting know that is what I did. We all lived thru it.
Southern Bap. missionaries were the ones who told me to try that after you got so sick. It worked for everyone else but didn't seem to help you much when you were down south and at home.

:):) for sure, what is natural manure or whatever it is you said. :):)

love/prayers --- Mom T

Cynthia said...

How nice of someone to give you a van! It'll be nice when you're settled and your other house has sold so you can figure out exactly where your budget is at....