I drove Big Red for the first time in months today. Every time I climb in to the cab I know that it could be my last time. There was frost on the windshield this morning. I turned on the defroster. I have been spoilt by the Little Blue Go-Cart, which actually has a working defroster. Big Red tried but only managed to blow cold air on to the window. I patted the dash and squirted the windshield with cleaner while running the wipers. I knew it would freeze up, really I did.
Driving Big Red is a challenge. The power steering on the right side is shot so I have to find a route to where ever I am going that has the most left turns. I can turn right... with a lot of muscle, and I know it hurts Big Red, so I try to stick to left turns. If that means that I have to go around the block a few times to get where I need to be then so be it. Anything for my baby.
The Oompas are disappointed with their dad. They think he doesn't want Big Red. They think he doesn't care. They are wrong. I just wish he was. I wish they were right and that Big Red just needed a little TLC, but in my heart I know it goes deeper than that. I am preparing myself for the inevitable.
This time next week I be saying my final good-byes to the old Ford and test driving some new nameless vehicle which will some day make its way into my heart the way its predecessor did.
But I guarantee it won't be a Mini-van!