Saturday, April 7, 2012

A 1908 Surry, ice cream and a girl on the run...

Another dad story.... can't be helped. So, back in the early 70's what type of cars did my friends receive from their parents? All the hot cars of that day that's what. Some their parents gave for getting their licence, others brother's handed over... all Very cool. Mostly, though if we wanted to go anywhere we would get our posse rounded up and drive our parents cars and cruise the boulevards. Linda and I were two of these, our cars were Cadillacs; Coup de Villes. Not very hot, but had a boatload of room for girls to do whatever it is that teenage girls do on Friday or Saturday nights (Santa Cruz, Los Gatos comes to mind). We would rotate weekends. Which was really handy as my dad was a safety dad. No one in particular souped up hot rod for his only daughter who might injure herself, what better than a 1908 Surrey? Yes, you heard me. I was the only girl Santa Clara who would tool around town in one of these. Not very far, as the tires would tend to go flat or pop. A good way to keep your teenager on a leash while appearing to support independence.
My dad was terrific, however, the one fault he had was TIME... he was so busy having a wonderful time doing his thing that everyone else's time got away from him.
Hours would pass, days would turn into evenings, evenings into weeks... Seriously. When dad said Tueday, I would always clarify which Tuesday of the month and what time... was that AM or PM and even those questions were irrelevent. Time meant nothing. Taylor, Monroe move aside you were mere rookies when it came to to delays and having people wait.
On one such summer afternoon with Santa Clara temps soaring into the triple digits which was a rarity, I found myself waiting for Dad and his friend Motts, we were going to go out for an ice cream. It was now late afternoon, I was beyond wilted and tired of waiting. Gram took pity on me and told me to drive over and pick up an ice cream- just be careful.
Of course, the moment I left and was out of sight Dad and Motts arrived (5 hours late). At the market I picked up a box of peanut clustered ice cream drum sticks to share when I got home. It was when I was nearing the house, turning the corner, when our driveway came into view and parked promently in front of our house was Dad's cadillac. It didn't take more than a second to see that my dad was furious, and he was never furious. Motts on the other hand, looked at me, said something to dad- they were standing in front of the garage and then his face became vastly amused. Something was up.
I pulled into the driveway and parked the Surrey inside the garage. Handing the box of drumsticks to  Dad I finished locking up the garage.
Where were you? Dad asked. I told him the truth that I had been waiting and I was beyond wilted and gram said I could go as long as I was careful. Dad appeared to give this grave attention then said, don't do this again! Motts and I looked at one another trying to figure out what that meant exactly. Dad said they would be going back to work-- it was now 6pm in the evening.
Motts told me years later that dad was only worried that something might have happened to me. He told Motts he was going to give it to me straight. Motts evidently didn't believe this and told dad that he would be waiting breathlessly to see how he handled this. Motts said, then you arrived with your jean shorts, barefeet, hair in pig-tails, carrying a box of drumsticks and dad said, Ah s**t! I can't do it.
Motts told him as they were walking to the cadillac, Boy... Swannie, that was one talking to I bet she never forgets! Dad suggested that Motts eat his ice cream, adding that it tasted good. Yeah, it does, Motts agreed.

                                                          Carol & Mike in the Surrey

                                               Me, Dad getting in the Surrey, Al & Gerri

Gerri & Al in the Surrey

Surrey w/ the fringe on top


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