Monday, February 28, 2011

Quest for a Grill

When I bought the car it looked like this:

The discerning eye will not the lack of a center kidney grille.  Not only was this a cosmetic issue, but in a state like Washington with its non-stop traffic of rock trucks and other hazardous material-carrying vehicles, the absence of a grill puts the radiator at risk of being hit by random flying objects in the road. For that critical piece of equipment is located just aft of the car's front.  The gaping hole in the middle would be an attractive target for any malicious object bent on creating mischief in a an old car.

So it was a simple choice to decide to acquire a new one, at least one that was new to me.  But from where?  BMW no longer made them and even if they did, the price would have been prohibitive.  A few searches online gave me no clues.  Not even on Ebay.

But then I hit on the idea of Ebay in Germany.  And found vast quantities of parts for the 2000.  But no grill, unfortunately.  I thought the best solution was to keep checking every day and sure enough, in about two weeks someone put a used grille 2000 grille for sale on

That was the easy part.  Despite being sent to me via "Global Priority Mail" by Deutsche Post and DHL, the package with the grille refused to arrive in the United States.  Requests for information to the German postal authorities either went unanswered or I received meaningless platitudes from anonymous officials in Germany. In all over a month passed before one day, when I least expected it, the doorbell rang to my front door.  I glanced out the window and saw an American mail person strolling casually back to his truck. And on the front stoop of the house was the most beautiful cardboard box I ever saw in my life.

And now the car looks like this: