Good news! I don’t need to part with my beaut. Some of the transmission lines were cut, somehow? The low transmission fluid caused the weird slipping. At a 125k we will continue on the quest for 200k, maybe even 300k!! Everything is running well again (minus the weird steering wheel issue).
I honestly was worried I’d have to replace the car. I love this car. She ain’t much, but she gets me to and fro. I even came to terms with getting an *gasp* auto Fiesta, since finding them in a manual (or even a Focus) is damn near impossible unless you want to pay over market value or get an ST.
Thank you oPPo community for all the tips and suggestions. I greatly appreciate all of your kindness.