There aren’t many things that bring about a stronger memory than getting our first car. That moment when you have freedom… well, maybe not total freedom, but freedom non-the-less. For me, it was a 1970 Mustang Mach I. It was blue and had those mufflers that were much louder than our neighbors probably would have liked.
I give my step-father a lot of credit when it came to, not only providing for me my first car, but teaching me the work ethic that I still live by today. I had just turned 16 and got my license. We took a drive out to the country to practice driving when we came across that beautiful Mustang sitting out in a front yard with a For Sale sign in the window. They wanted $1,000 for the car and my step-father decided that was a pretty good deal.
Within a week, I became the sophomore who drove into the high school parking lot with that beautiful, freshly waxed blue beauty. Except, I drove like a grandpa! I vowed I would never race it or drive recklessly (something I did do just a couple of times). I only had to pay for the insurance, so it was off to work to make some money.
Often, the responsibilities of life are the best teachers for us. They were for me. It was the thought of losing that car that kept me going. A whole new world was now open to explore. Gone was the bike and that dreaded school bus!
I’m sure every one of you remembers that time when you got your first car. It may have been a ‘beater’ but, if it had 4 wheels and ran, you were good to go. And, of course, that car wouldn’t have been complete without a stereo and speakers to play the jams of our day.
I’ve tried to keep the same commitment to get my kids a car and it’s been a bit expensive: three hand-me-down cars, two used cars, and two ‘Bank of Bradley’ financed cars later. Not to mention insurance, toll tags, repairs, and those late-night text messages saying they had a fender bender. One thing’s for certain, I’ve paid my dues and am ready to hand over that baton.
Thank you for letting me share this memory with you tonight. I hope you have a blessed day tomorrow and drive safe my friends!