It’s colder today, snow is on the ground and a four-day, November break provides welcome opportunity for rest from pushing hard in these first three months of the school year. A quick drive southward and back home last weekend recalled the following images needing an edit from July.
Along Route 66, nearing the Grand Canyon, restored cars are roadside attraction, the cars of former, American glory days, vehicles that you’d find reconstructed from other donor cars on reality television shows like ‘Counting Cars.’ That person, who in middle-age, is starting to find a surplus of funds in their bank account is the kind of person these cars belong to. For them and you, someone in the family owned one – Dad and Mom maybe, your grandparents, perhaps or maybe your cousin had one; and, if you were lucky that vehicle was the one you learned to drive in, was perhaps the vehicle that became yours (you bought it from another member in your family) and was the car that got you started in Life. In presentation, these Grand Canyon cars are arranged almost as they would be in a Show and Shine; the difference is that their owners are not hovering around them – the vehicles draw potential customers to the service station and to the hotel, a pit-stop and stopping point. Among the vehicles were a 1957 Mercury Thunderbird, a 1958 Ford Fairlane 500, a 1949 Chevrolet Fleetline Deluxe four-door (Police Car), what may be a 1931 Ford Sedan and a 1931 Ford Pickup truck and a 1957 Chevrolet 2-door coupe.
The 1949 Chevrolet Fleetline has me thinking back to Rimbey, Alberta and my uncle’s farm in the late sixties and early seventies. For many years, a mid-forties (1946-48) Chevrolet four-door fastback (blue/black with white roof) sat next to the farm shop. The intention had been to swap pistons from a second donor car and to add a second vehicle economically to a growing family that was becoming more and more on the move. Unfortunately, the pistons were of different sizes and the car did not move again. As kids on visits, my cousins, my brothers and I would pretend to drive to and from different places in this grounded car. A big, big steering wheel, a windshield that may have been two pieces in design, a springy and dusty bench seat and doors that creaked on ungreased hinges were setting to the play of the drive with family. In coming years, the Chevrolet fastback sedan was towed behind the farm’s barley silage silo.
A good, good reminiscence of former times, these.
Listening to – Over the Rhine’s ‘Born,’ ‘Bluer,’ ‘Spark,’ ‘Lookin’ Forward’ and ‘Who Will Guard the Door’ – November kind of music.
Quote to Consider – “Instead of just recording reality, photographs have become the norm for the way things appear to us, thereby changing the very idea of reality, and of realism.” – Susan Sontag, ‘On Photography’