Since much of my time lately consists of watching Soap Operas and eating Bon Bons, my father thought it would be good for me to go on a road trip. He had to take his truck to “the city” to get some work done on it, so I might as well come along for the ride.
I needed a moment to ponder. Suffice it to say, the truck isn’t one of those posh “luxury” vehicles with a box on the back. Oh no – it’s rather… standard. As in Standard steering, standard brakes and standard transmission. Not a cool stick with smooth gliding action, but a shifter that rises from the floor on a steel stem.
Now when Dad bought this truck new, he went for the basic model. Vinyl floors, vinyl seats (which, coincidently, would rip your hide off when you sat on it in July, and gave your hemerroids when you parked yourself on it in January.) and no radio…
but an 8-Track player, ya’ll. If you know anything about the people in Boweryville, you know we LOVE our music – and we love it LOUD. I developed my love of Bass from the blown out speakers that distorted our favorite songs. Dad had an extensive collection of 8-Tracks, including artists as diverse as Neil Diamond and Johnny Nash. I’m pretty sure those two didn’t break bread at any Grammy after-parties.
Some of my favorite childhood memories are about this 8-Track. It helped me with my hand-eye co-ordination, and gave me a new appreciation for my father’s sense of aim. Anyone who has ever enjoyed their favorite artist on an 8-Track, would know that this media was not meant to last. The tape would stretch which would cause the music to distort, which would prompt my father to utter,
“JAYZUS! Roll down the window S!”
Being the good first-born child that I was, and since I was usually at the window with my younger sister sitting in the middle, I rolled down the MANUAL crank as quickly as possible. Usually just in nick of time before he backhanded the offended cassette down the length of the cab, through the open window, and out onto some back country road. Don’t judge him for littering, there was no Inconvenient Truth as of yet. And Thank God – because he wasn’t the only one using ditches as personal garbage cans.
So with the anticipation of more heartwarming memories, I agreed to join him on his trek. There is preparation that must take place when taking the truck out for a tour. The most important is THIS
must be down. No need for any more drag than we already have. Oh, and did I mention, the box has been reinforced…
…because many a cattlebeast has been transported in this puppy, and let’s face it – we need more weight in a three-quarter ton.
As we pulled out onto the highway, I felt we were moving a little slower than I’m used to. Dad points out that the mileage (snicker, chuckle) on the truck is best economized at 50 mpg. Now, we live in Canada, so the entire Imperial System is a mystery to me, and apparently the other drivers, as we were passed repeatedly as we got up to “speed”. I anticipated a certain route for our drive, but was advised we should plan our trip based on where the gas stations are.
We were blessed with a beautiful day. Sunshine and warm breezes met us, and the windshield of the truck, which concerned my Dad considerably. Needless to say we have no air conditioning, so the windows are down and the extent of our conversation is pretty much as follows.
“DID YOU SAY SOMETHING?”
“I CAN’T HEAR YOU, WHAT??”
Quality father/daughter bonding, wouldn’t you agree?
After the repair was done, I’d had quite enough of being a spectator and offered to drive home.
I must have caught him in a weak moment, because he handed over the keys. Either that, or he’d been waiting for some comic relief.
Do you have any idea of how heavy a three-quarter ton truck is? Now try and turn it in an intersection with standard STANDARD transmission with a high clutch?? All I can say is, I’m glad I could give the ol’ boy a chuckle. I would, however like to cuss out the Dodge Caravan driver who doesn’t realize that ROUND-ABOUTS ARE NOT ROUND-ASTOPS!
Suffice it to say, that loser is going to have nightmares of this…
…all up in his business for a long-long time.
And I was up most of the night with Ice Cold on my forearms. My biceps, however, ROCK!