Friday, June 15, 2007
The Clean Machine Rides Again...Into the Sunset.
The Mohr family van, which has been in the family since its birth in 1974, rode off into the sunset with a new owner and friend today.
I know there's no way I can write a proper tribute to this van. It has had two owners, first Brian's parents, and then Brian himself over its 33 years.
Long before I came into the picture, it was a family van. Later when I was in high school and college, Brian and I snuck off to McDonald's during our high school lunch breaks, hung out in pea fields in it, went on ski trips and camping trips in it too.
The van had suffered a fire inside once, and I helped Brian replace the headliner and some of the other interior panels when we found a similar 1974 Ford Van in a junkyard in Yakima.
I think one of my favorite memories was right before we got married, when we took the van up on the Mountain Loop Highway northeast of Seattle, and when we realized we had forgotten camping chairs, we pulled the full-size sofa out of the back of the van and had that next to the fire. Oh, the looks we got from the few people who drove by our campsite!
Brian's friends would likely describe being on the road in the van on band tours that covered the better half of the Western U.S., and Brian's friend Tony, who took the van, worked with Brian to put a new engine in it several years ago.
Alas, the van is so old, the prospect of moving it back with us to the West Coast seemed impractical at best, and dangerous at worst. Not to mention the expense of gas, as it gets the classic "10 gallons to the mile" that many vehicles from the 1970s do.
So today, Brian's best friend Tony came up, and after a few hours of working on it, fired it up and took it down to Pueblo.
As much as this van has been an eyesore outside my kitchen window these past 6 years, I found myself getting sentimental as Tony prepared to drive away with it.
Goodbye, Clean Machine.
Your memories live on in our family, even if you're not with us anymore.