The darn old pickup is trying to tell me I have worn this one out. It has been a good one and faithful always but even machinery gets old. I tried to fix it a time or two and the offspring did their thing with it, but it just wants to die and, by golly, I'm gonna let it!
The driver's door is not working and the back window has been busted for a year. The seat cover is worn to threads on the side I scoot in on, and the gas tank says it is empty all the time. I can take the small thing in stride but it has left me stranded for the last time!
I waited for the offspring to leave the kitchen after dinner before I cleared my throat and began to talk about the dire need. I must have made the point because she stopped washing dishes and looked at me, although it was quizzically. I know she is famous for keeping what we have made in the safety of the bank, in case. Now, I am not just exactly sure what the case is, but it is important!
I explained my problems down to the fact I don't like to be left stranded on a country road going to the next county from the county farther east! We eyed each other like gunslingers for a second and she started washing dishes again. I was relieved! I can never be sure she won't shoot! Finally, with some serious words uttered, she reckoned we could swing it! I sure do appreciate her way with my hard-earned money. I might not have any if not for her and the diligent ways she takes care of it!
So we loaded up in the beat-up thing and to town we went, past the emporium and on to the Chevy dealer. I was gonna make the trade in one motion and be back at the place to get some work done. The boys were working and not aware I was gone so they are gonna wonder about my absence, go to the house to ask their mother where I was and she will be gone too and then, then they will start the hunt!
We saw lots of choices as we drove into the car lot. The pickup line was sure long and I wonder if any farmer really cares what color he drives! I sure don't and I guess that is why she came along, to pick the color. Maybe she won't haggle too long and we can go on home!
I looked around and found the three-quarter-ton trucks and liked what I was seeing but they were all brown or black. I did not care at all but she did! You can figure a female in the spring of the year would want pink or baby blue, whatever suited her fancy but not brown or black!
We looked and talked to the salesman for a really long time -- a really long time -- when I was trying to hurry home. I heard about his son's football injury and he heard about her trying time with making the quilt. I heard the cash quote and was rolling that around while they talked and entertained each other!
I finally interrupted the conversation and started making some offers when she demanded to see if he could find a dark green truck in the area. It sounded like a demand to me although she informed me it was a request!
We found one in dark green just 150 miles away and so we paid and headed home, just hoping we would make it. She sorta yelled as the poor old thing coughed!
We got home as the school buses were heading back to town! The boys had put the tools away and started to the house, sorta wondering what happened.
I can tell you what I got out of the event, another lesson! You can figure a lesson a day for almost every day you spend on this old earth. Some are easy, some bloody and some cost money! My lesson today was a repeat from long ago: Do not take anyone along with you to buy a vehicle! I fell for it one more time and I am sure I will have to pay for the 150-mile drive. But family harmony is priceless!
I have traded my red long johns for summer clothing and now hay season has me pretty busy but I still oil and polish some very precious arms when time allows. Going to get some more ammo too. Be alert and Remember the Alamo!
Bill is the pen name used by the Gravette-area author of this weekly column. The opinions expressed are those of the author.