Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Without a pickup
We bought our first pickup in 1969; it was the first new vehicle Cliff ever owned, and it became our sole means of transportation at the time. That was an exciting time for my husband, whose family had never owned a new vehicle due to a bad credit record. Many years later, Cliff co-signed with his parents and they finally purchased their first-ever brand new pickup, a Toyota.
My father-in-law always accused us of having lots of money squirreled away, but all we really had was good credit.
We had two children when we bought that 1969 Ford Ranger, but back then there were no seat belt or baby car-seat laws, and we made do. We'd put two-year-old Jimmy between us, often standing up in the seat (hey, don't judge; he survived, didn't he?) and I'd hold the baby, Rachel, on my lap. Later on, Rachel and Jimmy both sat between us. If I'm tallying it up right, we've owned five different pickups over the years, only one Chevy in the bunch. We finally caved in around 1980 and bought an old Plymouth car because the kids were getting big enough that the cab of a pickup just wasn't big enough. I think from then on, most of the times when we had a pickup, we also had a car. Two vehicles, even though I never did drive. But living in the country, a person needs a truck to haul hay and hedge posts and firewood and livestock.
Cliff drove our old 1988 pickup for the final time last weekend, down to southern Kansas where his brother had a buyer for it. Even though the truck sat in the garage most of the time, there's a helpless feeling, knowing it's gone. We'd owned it since 1989, and in two more years it would have been a classic and would never have needed a new license again.
When Bonnie needs to meet up with a bull next fall, things will be a little more complicated: we'll have to borrow a pickup in order to hitch up to the livestock trailer so we can take her for a conjugal visit. The grandson lives nearby, so we can borrow his truck for a day or two and let him drive our car. That would be our simplest solution. If Arick's truck isn't available, we'll be driving 25 miles to Cliff's brother's place and borrowing his pickup. With the price of gas that won't be cheap, but we'll do what we must. Of course, any time you borrow a vehicle, there's the chance that it will break down, which means whoever is driving it at the time is responsible for repairs; that's always been the rule in this family.
I'm wondering if Cliff and I should get a reasonably-priced newer pickup (not brand new, ever) and use it as our sole transportation. It's just the two of us now: you know, trade in the old Mercury... maybe when we're too old to ride the motorcycle.
Somehow it just doesn't feel right, not having a pickup.