Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Random Photo of the Day

My paternal grandfather with his 1932 Chevy roadster packed for a camping trip. Both of my grandparents emigrated to the US from England after the Great War. The little guy just visible over my Pop's hand is my dad. This is what my dad has to say about the car:

I'm pretty sure it is a 1932 Chevy roadster, complete with rumble seat. That's Pop at the wheel. He drove us from Nova Scotia to Miami in it. On the trip to Halifax the corduroy dirt roads shook the luggage rack on the rear so badly we had to stop and get it welded. The camping gear was in another rack on the running board. The car had isinglass curtains as needed for weather. I can remember coming home at night snugged down in the closed up rumble seat.

Remember we bought this car during the Depression when few had cars and even fewer had roadsters with spare tires in the fender wells. We didn't have a garage, living in an apartment, but rented one from a toff who was finding it difficult to meet the monthly bills.

My mother managed the finances and how she saved the dough, as Pop paid cash for the Chevy, I'll never know. That Chevy was the most impractical model sold, but Mom knew what put the neighbors off.

In my own time, about 25 years later, my dad would end up packing my mom, sister and I into a 1950 Ford sedan and driving from upstate New York to our new home in Oregon, taking time to visit Mt Rushmore, Yellowstone Park and every other interesting location along the way. Entertainment consisted of punching my sister, playing the alphabet game (I'm sure she cheated most of the way across country) and reading Burma Shave signs. Five years after that, we reversed the trip (in a station wagon, I'm pretty sure) but swung through the Southwest, Texas, Arkansas, Kentucky and Tennessee. It's too bad I never tried this stunt with my kids, but I probably would have strangled us all halfway through the trip.

1 comment:

Andy said...

My family did the cross-country trip upwards of 10 times, often twice a year, although in far less glamorous vehicles. (mid-70s AMC Hornet, '79 Mazda GLC wagon)

How this feat was managed with a minimum of argumentation, squabbling, etc., I'll never know. I believe the Ponderosa Steakhouses had something to do with it...