It's tough to be serious all the time, and despite many madcap adventures, I think we are essentially a serious family. This is why owning a 1962 Volkswagon Ragtop Bug is good for the soul.
We've owned this bug since 1985, a few months before our first child was born. Let me tell you, being in labour, on Queen Street Toronto, stuck in traffic at Spadina, just in front of a street car stop will either destroy you or give you food for dinner party conversations for years.
We are celebrating our 50th birthdays in the next twelve months, our 30th wedding anniversary (depends who you talk to, the mother-in-law-dear quibbles) and the ownership of this car of nearly 25 years. Is that right? Does that mean Lucas is 24, not 22? I must be doing some math wrong. But at any rate, we've own this baby for a long time and it is time to celebrate.
This Sunday we are heading to John's Lunch, reputed to be the best fish and chips joint in the whole province. It is in Dartmouth and down a road not often traveled, unless it is your neighbourhood. Bugs from across the province will gather and feast. And I will put on a tight t-shirt and pretend my figure isn't as round as the bug's and drape myself occasionally across the front bumper of the bug in a Vavoom kind of way.
“the hottest site for custom car accessories around”
The things we grew up with are sometimes embarrasing. From before birth, Steve's world had hot rods and oldy-cars in it. The women then wouldn't have considered themselves to be Vavoom girls, those posters were kept in the garage or the attic. But doesn't she look like she's having fun? Perched on that hot metal car? Owww! My bottom hurts.
Sometimes I will drape myself over the back bumper, but this will likely be in an attempt to avoid somebody. Avoiding people is usually because I haven't a clue what they are talking about. As I stand beside the car with a foolish grin on my face (part of greasing the wheels by which society turns) someone inevitably asks me a question about the car. “What kind of engine does it have?” - “One without a piston rod through the block?”.... “Any work on the chasis?” - “Well probably, what's a chasis? Can we see it if we look somewhere?” or my favourite, “Where's the owner?” I'm a co-owner but this question allows me to look elsewhere and find the man.
So if I see someone who has a glint in their eye, I sidle to the back bumper, lean over it (it might be a fender or a wheel well, its the roundy part at the back near the tail pipe) and pretend I am looking for something under the car. When I resurface, I grin like mad and usually this startles the viewer and they move along. Quickly. If only this worked in grocery store line-ups.
To celebrate, we will have John's fish and chips (Steve gets his own chips, he uses vinegar, ugh) and a pop. Hopefully a dark pop like root beer. Then we can burp. This will make us feel silly and giggle. If our daughter is along with us, she could burp loud enough to make fanatical car-performance wheenies check for lost tail pipes. I'm not naming any name, because I don't know them, but there are some fellows who come to these things with cooking thermometers to see how hot the engines became during the drive. This probably has something to do with fine tuning engines, or grades of oil or yada yada. In my life, this would be used to see how hot it is getting under the dashboard where the heater resides and to prove to Steve that my ankles are indeed swelling up from the pounding hot blasts from a heater that should be turned off but isn't.
To continue the celebration, we will take hundreds of photographs of cars standing still. We will jocky for position to get just the right angle on a side view mirror or a hub cap. Life has an endless supply of things that tickle us pink, and Volkswagon bugs, buses, camper vans and all the rest provide lots of pink.