I sat, lonely and dirty. A memory of the past. Visitors would come see Lisa and Brian, some of them would ask to see what I was about so they would open me up and let friends peek inside. Once and awhile they would let kids climb around and pretend like I was a cool fort! Lisa would recollect all the fun that Rogers family had in me. It made me feel special and beautiful again. Boy did I miss those days!
I remember one night their boy, Steve, came out and just sat on my couch. He was a little sad, but I could tell he had twinge of excitement in him. It was like the feeling the kids would get just before Christmas. Usually Steve would just ignore me, so this night was pretty special. He started to clean me a little and then he was talking on his phone. He was the typical teenager! He was asking about engines and transmissions. I was thinking that maybe it would be my turn to get all dolled up. Then Steve said something that gave it all away… “The only way I could afford that, is if I sell my Grampas bus!” He shut my sliding door, locked it and walked back into the house still chatting about differentials and turbo charging and fancy talk like that. All I could think about was his comment, “Sell my Grampas bus”….
Did I really just hear that? Brian and Lisa were going to let their son sell me? WHY? To whom? When? I’m NOT ok with this!
The next day, Steve came outside with an camera hanging around his neck. I could see he had the key in his hand and so I mustered all the strength I could imagine. PLEASE oh please let me start right up! Maybe If I did, he would remember how trustworthy I am and reconsider selling me. He put the key into my ignition and I started up as easy as putting warm butter on a piece of sourdough bread! He let out a, “hmmm” sound. Not those kind that mean that the human is thinking, but the kind that shows a little surprise with approval attached to it. It took a few minutes for the thick old oil to start flowing smooth. I tried my best to hush the rattles and knocks that most VW buses are known for. I really wanted the boy to realize that selling me would be a BIG mistake!
The backdoor opened up and I heard Brian yell out, “Best to let her warm up a few minutes before you drive her!” WAIT, I was going on a drive? With the boy? He could do that? I started thinking how I needed to be give my best performance! Surely if he enjoyed this drive he wouldn’t sell me…
Steve jumped in the drivers seat and put me into 4th gear. WAIT! NO, don’t do that! He let the clutch out and gave it too much gas. I couldn’t do anything but lug, lurch, spit, cough and then, my motor cut out. Oh, this was not good! He tried to restart me, pumping the gas before turning the key. Too much gas! I couldn’t do anything but make that silly cranking sound. Luckily his dad ran up and said I was flooded and to give me a few minutes. Steve pulled out his hand phone and again. His dad noticed it too. This kid was always on his phone! Then Steve asked his dad if he knew how to put me in reverse. Haha! I am GERMAN! I guess he found the right diagram on his phone because he started me up, pushed the shifter down, over, and back and VOILA! I clunked into gear. Next time I will go softer, but I wanted him to know it was the right gear. 😉
Heading down their driveway was always such fun. Anticipating the next great adventure help me to feel rejuvenated. Turning onto the main road, I started dreaming of this great adventure we were going to have. Driving through the mountain passes, over the desert plains, maybe even arriving at the ocean this time! How fun! The boy was doing a wonderful job driving me. Smooth shifting through the gears, at just the right rpms. Not over steering at all, which most new VW bus drivers automatically do. I just LOVE taking my humans on trips! Sometimes we would stay at campgrounds. Sometimes we would just park up in the mountains. But always, we would connect. Always we would be content and have purpose, meaning to existing. Just as I was about to get into my traveling groove, we turned around and headed back. I was confused… OK, maybe the boy forgot some stuff. That’s pretty common for boys his age! I don’t remember him putting sleeping bags, or actually, he didn’t have any camping gear with him. Just his camera around his neck.
Reaching the driveway we stopped. It was very awkward actually. I couldn’t figure out if he was going to run in the house and get his stuff or what he was doing. He turned off the engine. shut the door and started to take pictures of me. I wasn’t clean! I had a layer of dust completely covering me! My pop-top! It was covered with the black dot mold from sitting in the wet climate of Oregon and then coming to the dry desert of Utah… It was like it was baked into my fiberglass! And here he was snapping pictures. Well, I hope he wasn’t planning on putting these pictures in his wallet!
Little did I know, this would be my last drive with this family. The last set of pictures they would have of me.
Steve drove me back up the driveway, parked me, locked me up and said, “Bye old bus. You’ve been a good, fun vehicle. I’m gonna miss you a little.” He turned away and walked inside the house. That was the last time I saw the boy.
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