Posts tagged ‘Nashville’

May 23, 2011

The Red Dakota Truck

The Red Dakota
The Truck as Match Maker

Many years ago I traveled to Nashville on business. For some reason I was offered a Ranger pick up as a rental. Having always been madly fascinated by all things country including: music, trucks, cowboys and rodeos, I was quick to take the truck.

At that time we were just moving from the city to the country and I needed a “station car.” My heart was set on a pick up. We headed out to look at the options and picked a red Dakota, which is a 3/4 size truck with a six foot bed. I loved driving that truck to the station for many years. There were only two pick ups in the commuter lot.
Eventually, the truck was stationed in Connecticut at our house and used to haul kayaks to Lake Winchester. I would drive it on the weekends, but over the winter it mostly sat in the garage feeling useless and unloved. Sometimes I brought it down to Rye Brook since my normal car didn’t do too well in the snow. It was not ideal for a truck who really wanted to be a work horse.
Ellie and Peter started driving at the same time. There was no way Peter was going to drive the red truck. It made much more sense for him to use Alex’s green Subaru Forester. Peter had longer distances to drive to Westchester Community College and he wanted a lower profile. The idea of Ellie, who displayed a bit of recklessness in her early driving days, would be ensconced in a big pickup was also a comforting thought. I am not sure she was too hot on the idea of a red pick up, but it was that or the school bus. Short argument.
Rye Brook high school kids all revel in the right to drive to school. Some of these kids drive some pretty fancy rides. I am not sure how wise it is to equip a 17 year old male with a BMW 300 series car or some of the other models I see, but let’s just say that student parking lot has some pretty nice wheels in it. I can promise you there is only one red Dakota pick up. Ellie has embraced her notoriety. She has christened my truck, Betsy Snow, for reasons she can’t quite articulate. She enjoys driving around town recognized by one and all. Aside from a few minor mishaps, she has learned to negotiate that 6-foot bed into most parking spots.
As the spring rites of boys asking girls to Prom heated up, Betsy Snow played a key role. It turns out Jordan, who has the parking spot next to Ellie, liked more than Ellie’s truck. She emerged from the school building one day to see “Prom?” spelled out in colorful post it notes on the back of her truck and Jordan’s stereo blasting. He presented her with roses in front of two gym classes and the track team who were all working out in the adjacent athletic field.
Teenagers may not like to stand out, but that red Dakota has been a welcome bit of notoriety, a match maker and it still does a great job hauling kayaks. Who knows, next year it may be back in the commuter parking lot.
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