I like to think that all children go through the time when they are embarrassed by their parents. Or they want distance that doesn’t jive with a parent’s thoughts. It isn’t necessarily anything that would make me proud, but I can admit I went there.
And I have one crystal clear memory of this…. yes, this has stuck with me a long time. Maybe this will let me free myself of it.
I had spent a week with dear friends at camp. I was sad to say goodbye to friends.
Since this was before everyone had cell phones, we had plans where I was to call home when we stopped in Jackson so mom would have an idea on timing. I talked with her and we all grabbed our snacks and hopped back in the church van to head on to Memphis.
When we got to the church in Midtown, I was surprised that instead of seeing my mom’s car, I saw a car my dad had recently gotten from my great aunt.
Friends’ parents were showing up in cool vehicles with power windows and beautifully shiny paint with a great wax sheen.
My dad’s car….. well it was old.
I can’t say I saw the potential and the enthusiasm dad had.
It was a horrible light green and white two-tone Nash Rambler. It had the goofy round headlights. Everything original. It sat much lower than the other cars and in my teenage mind, it looked like something Fred Flintstone would drive.
The car only had an AM radio, I seem to remember a weird shift on the steering column and an inability to accelerate quickly. And yes, the windows made a slow crank — it took actual energy to roll them up.
I really don’t remember whether he was out of the car, or politely chatting with others. Heck, other parents may have been asking about the car. All I remember was wondering why didn’t mom come or why he didn’t at least drive another car and how could we get out of there pronto.
And yes, after I got a few years older, I found a sense of romanticism to it too. And I admit a part of me has always wanted a classic car. I just didn’t think that was “classic” when I was a young teen.
Eventhough I had begun to see the world a little differently by the time my dad was sick and I was in college, I never told him I was sorry if I was rude or bitchy that day. I don’t think I’ve ever really shared it with anyone else in the family…. though I doubt it will be surprising.
I’m sure there were other times when I rolled my eyes or let out a harrumph about something happening, but they got fewer and further between.
Maybe that’s normal for a teen? Your experience?
A Month of Memories
Thanks for reading this post in my National Blog Post Month series of a month of memories.
Betty Davis Tredway says
Ahhh, yes Janice…..I remember that beauty well. It was my mother’s car and she bought it “brand new”….First car she ever bought. Your dad was always so special to her and she was delighted and happy that he wanted her car. Your dad was also so special to me….the only first cousin I had that I ever spent any time with and we were so close when we were young. He was my “date” the year that I was a “princess” in the cotton carnival and went to what was then the “children’s ball”. Your grandmother, my aunt, made my corsage from the flowers in her yard. Our transportation to this event was by “bus” with my mother going along. Guessing we were about 8 or 9 years old. Frank and I always had so much fun together, always getting into trouble. Such sweet memories I have of him.
Janice Person says
Thanks Betty for sharing! I’d love to capture more stories of my dad as child or young adult, etc. I haven’t have very many but this story you just told created great pictures in my mind!