A Sexy Car I Met at the Gas Pump

29 July 2008

Okay, so having just spent time with my brother three days in a row, I have cars on the brain.

I got up early this morning, and drove to downtown Kenosha to have breakfast with William and Melanie before they left town to head home.  We went to Franks Diner (Stephen had just introduced me to the place last week) since I pretty much insisted that they enjoy some local flavour rather than McDonald’s.  Melanie had biscuits and gravy and William and I split a three-piece order of French toast.  Oh my goodness, was it good!  And, the coffee was very good, too—not something I can say of all breakfast places. 

We had a great time together, and by ten o’clock, we were giving and receiving our goodbye hugs and kisses.  They were headed down the road to a little town in Illinois called Volo, where there is apparently a world-class car museum.  They claim to house the original TV Batmobile, Knight Rider’s Kit, and Herbie, the Love Bug.  I’m sure these cars have multiple incarnations housed in various places, but still—it’s a draw.  They have many, many other antique and collectible automobiles, as well as, apparantly, an adjacent antique mall.  I was pretty jealous that they were going, and I was not, but we made tentative plans to repeat this visit next year, such that I can join in on this little jaunt.

Anyway, I was on my way back to the site, when I decided to pull into a gas station I was passing, and fill up.  My truck was pretty empty, and the prices have dropped a bit—I paid $3.85—so it seemed like a good time.  As I turned in, I spotted this adorable little blue sports car, and I could barely get out of my truck fast enough to get a better look!  I stuck my head around the gas pump and said to the man with her, “That is a beautiful little car!  What is she?,” proving both my interest and my ignorance, I suppose. 

“A Triumph,” he replied, “TR3.”

“How old is it?”

“1958.”

By this time, I’d grabbed my camera and walked around the pump to see the car from the front.  “Wow,” I said.  “She is really sweet. You must have a blast with it.  Do you mind if I take a photo?”  

He said “No, of course not.” He then informed me that he was only the second owner, that the car only had 28,000 miles on it when he got it, and that he’d put quite a bit of work into it recently, including new paint. 

 “So, she’s pretty much your baby, isn’t she?,” I asked.

“One of them,” he coyly replied.

“Now, you sound like my brother!,” I told him.  “I just had a wonderful visit with my little brother who was up here from Kansas City to buy a car, and who is right now, as we speak, on his way to the car museum in Volo.”

“Oh, that’s a great place,” he said, and he whipped out his wallet, and easily pulled out his annual pass to the place! “I go there all the time!”

From there we had a wonderful conversation.  He wanted to know if I was from Kansas City, too.  That lead to where I live and why I’m up here in the summer.  Turned out, he lives in San Antonio, and only spends the summers here, too.  He’s a retired lawyer, and has never been to Bristol, but shared a fun story about his visit in the seventies, to the Pleasure Faire in Agora!  His name was John.  It was a delightful little exchange, and I can totally credit my brother.  If I hadn’t had cars on my brain, I’d have pulled into that gas pump, and put gas in my tank, and thought to myself as it drove away, “what a sexy little car!”

After finally filling my tank ($77 later), I got back to the site just in time to make it to my eleven o’clock massage therapy appointment with Robert Ray.  It seems to be making a difference for me, so I’m spending this little bit of money on myself each week, hoping to end the summer in less pain than I began it.

I worked through the afternoon, dealing with some special order issues (one involving a lost box, and potentially a big chunk of change out of my pocket because of it) and eventually getting pretty down in the dumps.  I’m refusing to write about the details, ’cause I have no desire to revisit how low I got in those hours.  I tried curing my doldrums with some dancing, attending the onsite swing dance class at 3 p.m.  It totally worked for a while, and while I was dancing, I felt great.  We learned the shim sham, which is fabulous fun and we worked a bit on six-count, too.  However, when I left the class, and faced my world again, I found myself right back on the road toward depression.  I returned some phone calls, including one to Kyle where I got to really unload and while cathartic, it wasn’t healing.  Then, I got a cheerful call from Delaenya asking me to join the “girls” for dinner at The Chancery.  I’d already decided to stay in, eat leftovers, and spend the evening in the workshop, but friendship and comraderie won out, and into the van I got.  Shannon, Delaenya, Karley, Ginger, Kelly and I had a very nice little dinner, and spent the time talking about people’s problems that weren’t my own.  I guess that’s what I needed—that and the margarita! 😉

Kelly and I did work for a while after dinner, but I went to bed shortly after midnight, with my sights set on a better tomorrow!