It’d been a long week. I spent a couple of extra hours at work Friday evening to take care of a few extra things, and finally it was over. I went up to the roof where I always park and took in the warm, orange, purple sunset, and then I was off.
Today was probably the hottest day of the year so far. I drove by the Cal campus where scantily clad coeds were making their way out of class, but my mind was on something else. I cracked open my windows and turned off the air conditioning. I adjusted my seat-back forward, shifted into S, and grabbed the steering wheel with both hands. It was time to get ready.
The road to the starting line was paved with pedestrians, minivans, and bicycles, but as they say, nothing worth having comes easy. I made my way up the perimeter of the campus, the engine purring ever so slightly as a sign of things to come. A couple of right turns, a left turn, and then a short trip over a potholed road, and there I was. No more pedestrians, no more cars. Just me, my TSX, and the impending twilight.
I slammed the accelerator and the engine roared to life, sucking in air through the velocity stacks of the CT-E icebox and mixing it with 93 octane gasoline. One could call it sweet music (or VTEC). I quickly tapped the paddle shifter; the sweet music changed to a subtle hum. A shallow S-turn was coming. There were no oncoming cars. A line flashed through my mind and a split second later I was guiding the TSX along it, briefly crossing over the double-yellows as the pitch of the engine rose to a crescendo.
Next was some open road where I could increase my velocity. I felt the suspension stiffen as my speed increased. I took a turn thinking that I was going too fast. The Bridgestone Potenzas hugged the road while the Ebony Leather bucket seats hugged me. My body felt the Gs and my heart felt the fear, but I wasn’t even close to this machine’s limit. Another turn. I went faster, and the front-left tire screeched in warning. I pulled back a little, and for a split-second moment, everything was in balance, in slow motion: my body and arms fighting inertia, my foot keeping the tires planted on the road, the Eibach springs maintaining the low center of gravity, and the sun finally creeping below the horizon.
With the onset of twilight came the onset of traffic once again. Back under the limit, I had a chance to glimpse over to the West. The Golden Gate Bridge, living up to its name. The entire San Francisco Bay, basked in a dark orange, blue, and purple. Though it was short, I had had my fun. I shifted back to D, closed the windows, turned on the air conditioning, and the TSX transformed back into a luxury sedan. Just as it had every day this long week, my car transported me back home with a smile on my face.
Update: I submitted this story to Acura’s Owner Stories site and it got published!