I instantly fell in love with the black and cognac interior. From the rich color contrast, to the smooth, rounded contours and the fine texture of the leather seats, the feeling was instantly sensual and invigorating. My good friend told me, “Buy the one you love.” So at 9 p.m. on a Sunday night, I entered my inquiry into the website.
When I first saw the Alfa Romeo Giulia adverts on the Tennis Channel, owning a Giulia was added to my list of desired life accomplishments. Beyond the sleek design and speedy performance, the narrative spoke to me:
- Be the standard.
- Experience the drive you’ve never had.
And who wouldn’t want a sexy car that shares your name?
Should I buy a second car?
Since I often travel by air and I already own a good car set up for all my outdoor adventures, my practical side always reminded me a second car was unnecessary. Enter a global pandemic and most of my travel has halted. I relinquished my goal of visiting 40 countries by my 40th birthday. Rather than road tripping in Europe with my friends, I was at home feeling restless and uninspired. I needed to find a way to celebrate even during a pandemic. Finally, I had my epiphany. Maybe it was time to buy my Giulia. Perhaps I would be inspired by more domestic destinations if I was driving an inspiring car. The thought of spending money on a racy car during a pandemic when I had mandatorily been out of my day job for 2.5 months felt exhilarating and slightly naughty. My inner rebel was alive.
I am a fact finder and annoyingly deliberative about my decisions. The prospect of shopping for and purchasing a car was as much stress as joy. Both knowing and finding what you want is the real challenge of car shopping. I jumped online and started educating myself about the Giulia, paying special attention to which colors and features gave me a positive visceral reaction. Psychologists say that we buy a car based on our connection to it. The car becomes an extension of our personality and identity. And there she was with the beautiful two-tone interior. Love at first sight.
Find your car guy
Within an hour of my 9 p.m. online inquiry, a lovely response from the dealership’s internet sales manager landed into my inbox. I was impressed by the quick after-hours response. At the conclusion of his email, he said this: “Driving the car and making sure you love it is the most important part.” I had found my car guy.
Deals are fleeting
Between busy work schedules, my car guy and I didn’t get to talk in seriousness until three days later when I learned that my beloved Giulia had been sold the night before. Damn it! I wasn’t quick enough. Too deliberative. I was trying to take the emotion out of what was, in fact, an emotional decision. Naturally, I was disappointed and discouraged. When I shared the news and my emotions with my coach, she said, “That wasn’t your car.” I didn’t want to believe her.
Patience with the process
My car guy introduced me to another Giulia. I tried to keep an open mind, but it wasn’t love. I waffled. I haltingly tried to tell my car guy that I really loved the other Giulia, all the while trying to convince myself that maybe love wasn’t that important.
Just make the decision
Two days later in the middle of my morning at work, I receive a text message from my car guy. It read, “Hold the phone.” I laughed out loud, but my excitement returned. I called my car guy on lunch hour and he informed me that he found the exact Giulia that I loved. It had been a two-year lease which meant it was a year newer with more remaining warranty and cooler tech features. It hadn’t even been inventoried into the lot yet. He thoughtfully put a 24-hour hold on the car for me. My car guy was so genuinely excited for me. His energy spilled over the phone line. And I knew this time I needed to make a fast decision. Buy the one you love, Julie…The words ran through my head all afternoon.
The Giulia I love
That evening I called my car guy and put a deposit down on my Giulia. I felt exhilarated and a little bit terrified. A week later when I stepped into my Giulia, wrapped my hand around the wheel and breathed in her new-car smell, I knew the love was real. And did I mention that her black paint literally sparkles? As I guided Giulia down the road for our first drive together, it was the driving experience I’d never had before, and I couldn’t stop smiling.