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DEFEND YOUR RIDE: Bambi At Sleeping Giant

February 13, 2012 3:00 AM

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"It's great for travel. I can fit a lot in the back."

dyr hartford DEFEND YOUR RIDE: Bambi At Sleeping Giant

“It’s a customized 2001 PT Cruiser, if you can believe it!”

The Ride
The Driver: Bambi
Car in Question: 2001 Chrysler PT Cruiser
Spotted at: Sleeping Giant State Park, Hamden, CT 06518
Odometer: 150,000
Car’s Nickname: Smurf Mobile

THE DEFENSE

Q: Your name is Bambi. It seems like you should have a stylish car. What’s your story?

A: We were driving around. I just happened to see this car out on the road with a for sale sign on it. I told my husband, stop, because that looks like I should own it. When I pulled up and saw who was selling it, it was an old friend from high school that had it custom made. I called up and Dave said I’d rather you have this car than anybody else. He loved it, treated it like a baby. He gave me a cover for it and a very good price.

Q: How long have you had it?

A: I’ve had it for a few years now. It’s about ten years old. It’s a great car. It gets a lot of attention. I like that. People know where you are every minute of the day because they notice that car. It was one of the greatest things because that car is me. It’s fun. It gets a lot of attention. It likes to go places. It’s great for travel. I can fit a lot in the back and Grandma loves it. She has Alzheimer’s. She gets to sit in front and touch the dash and play with the colors and the little swirl design. It makes her happy. So that’s it. It makes me happy and it makes my family happy.

Q: That’s a fantastic reason to love a car. Tell us about the customization. What exactly is customized on it?

A: Dave customized the fire flame stripes on the side, and had the sunroof put in, and the tail on the back, and had the dash made to have it match to the outside. It’s one of kind. You won’t see another one like it. The car’s one of a kind and I’m one of a kind!

Q: What makes you one of a kind?

A: With a name like Bambi? I’m a recreation director. That’s my job. Professional bingo caller. I play piano and sing, but my audience is tone deaf. They think I’m great. It works out well for me. I like to be myself and make people happy. I have three children. I tell them as long as you make one person smile a day, you did your job. I think that car makes people smile. Kids like it. It looks like a big Hot Wheels car. Adults call it the Smurf Mobile.

Q: Where did that nickname come from?

A: The movie was coming out and actually, my friend was an extra. People kept asking me, aren’t you gonna try and get the car in there? The car did get in an independent film called “Happy Widowers” and the producer is from Connecticut. It hasn’t been released yet. It was one of the main character’s car. You see the car drive in and out. It will be fun to see it there.

Q: What’s your driving style like?

A: I’m a slow driver. I know it has the flames on the side. If it’s 65 mph, I’m at 65 or 60. I’m one of the slower ladies. But it cruises nice. It’s comfortable. It’s my little cruiser. I like the tinted windows, so if I don’t want people looking in, they don’t see me. I like the sunroof.

Q: Will your kids drive it?

A: My sons are 20 and 22. They like it, but they feel a little embarrassed in it. They think it looks girlie. I think the car could be either way. A man owned it before me. I don’t see the big deal, but my boys think it’s feminine looking. Maybe because it’s Mom’s car. It’s in great condition, no accidents or anything. It bounces back, like me!

Photos and interview by Ken Liebeskind

Are you ready to Defend Your Ride? If so, email localautos@cbs.com with “Defend Your Ride CT” in the subject line for submission details.

View previous Defend Your Ride features as well as other great stories for people who love cars at CBSConnecticut.com/Autos

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