I am a foolish sentimentalist and an unmanly sensitive soul. I am easily hurt and I avoid things that I fear will do damage. I cover it with bravado and occasional forced good cheer. To others I seem strong because I force myself to do what must be done to do right by my family, my friends, and even by myself. Well mostly on the last part. But I find the smallest and in the cold light of ration silliest thing to disturb me sometimes.
Before you flee this isn’t a maudlin diary that contains heart pain that will in turn hurt your heart.
On Saturday I am trading in my pickup truck, my silver Dodge. As pickup trucks go it’s nothing special. It is a standard cab, long bed with a 4.7l v8 that is coughing radiator fluid into the combustion chambers. I’ve owned it for about six years; it’s the second truck I’ve owned amongst various cars.
I was cleaning it out this evening, and I found myself being somewhat maudlin over it. When I first invited my Father to Men’s Camping Weekend, this was the truck we drove. As a matter of fact, he owns one almost identical, except two years news, 4 wheel drive and less power features. He still comes camping with us. We have had a lot of laughs and attempts to solve the problems of the universe in that truck.
My wife’s best friend was so nervous when he drove it back from the hospital for me. When I was hospitalized for anemia the first time in early 2006, I drove that Dodge to the hospital and parked it across the street. After I was admitted, he drove it back. It only bears mentioning because he was so concerned he might damage it on the 10-minute drive back to my house.
My wife and I have been going to drive-in movies for the last several years. We enjoy being in the car together watching, drinking illicit wine. We have for the most part used my Dodge for that, it’s a bit higher up than her Murano.
I cleaned out all of the nooks and crannies. I took out my can of WD-40, the receiver hitch, my ratcheting tie-down straps, my jumper cables. The rubber mallet and claw hammer, two pairs of work gloves I kept behind the seat. My sets of darts from my league days, kept in there for the once to twice a year I go out with friends to shoot these days. A set of D&D dice. There were three pairs of spare sunglasses, maps, and all manner of detritus.
After I cleaned it out I drove it back into the garage. I will take out the iPod interface tomorrow and swap the original battery back into it. The original battery was serving as the electric power plant for my summer convertible, an old Buick. Its on a battery tender, and will do fine for its final trip to the dealer.
I feel a little sad, despite the fun of getting a new vehicle. It served me well, if much less shorter time than I had envisioned. Extensive research says its particular malady is the result of bad luck, rather than poor design or lack of maintenance. I will miss my silver Dodge, sentimental fool that I am. I will come to love the new vehicle as much, or that’s what I hope. I will always remember it, part of important memories formed with friends and loved ones.
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