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The End of an Era

I say goodbye to the little van that could.

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Raul Vasquez is an electrician based out of Marin County, California. I have worked on a couple jobs with Raul, and he’s a great electrician. Raul has been an electrician for 17 years now. As a matter of fact, his first day at trade school was September 11th, 2001. Raul and I drive the exact same van for work. Well, I guess I should be using the past tense, because Raul just drove away with my van. A single tear runs down my cheek.

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July 22nd, 2018 marks the day I sold my sweet little green van. I found this 2010 Ford Transit Connect on Craigslist in February of 2016. I was five months into owning my company, I was working out of the back of my personal vehicle (a 2002 Toyota Tacoma), and I needed a work van. The moment I saw it, I wanted it. If you can’t tell, it was an old Solar City van, hence the bright green color. I proudly traded in my Tacoma, and drove home my new “Little Green Monster.” Happy as a clam, I branded it with my very own logos, and called it mine for well over two years.

The Transit is a wonderful little vehicle. Front wheel drive, 4 cylinder (so a little weak up the steep hills of Marin, but a great gas saver — about 20 miles per gallon, while loaded up with all of my tools), 5 — yes, five — doors, and not to mention the upfitting which it already came with: ample shelving and locking ladder racks. The bright green color, contrasted with my own bold black decals, made the van very distinct, and my customers would honk and wave when they saw me around town. Some of my customers would honk and flip me off, but that’s another story.

However, the time came when I would desire more space. I am not a small man; crawling around in the back of the Transit left me yearning for *just* a little more free space. That, and the fact that I had every nook and cranny filled with parts and tools, put me on the market for a step up.

I found what I was looking for with the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter cargo van lineup. Particularly, the high roof models, boasting about 6’3″ of clearance. I spent months researching, test driving, price comparing, shopping and saving, and on a sunny San Francisco day in June 2018, I purchased a brand-spanking-new Sprinter van from Mercedes-Benz SF. The very first new vehicle I have every purchased in my life. And with any luck, and lots of oil changes, hopefully the last work van I will need to purchase.

(That means I am either retiring in my 40’s, or I am hoping this van will run smoothly into my 70’s.)