When our family was growing up I could get a welcome break from sticky kids and demanding teens when I was working in the vegetable garden. Children knew if they came around they would be enlisted in the job.
Washing and waxing a car is a similar task. It’s a justifiable reason to spend time in the outdoors with results to make one proud and no interruptions while working.
I parked my Subaru on a shady part of the lawn late in the afternoon and proceeded to “wax on, wax off.” The air was comfortable, birds sang, there were no biting insects and I enjoyed some thinking time.
I worked over the hood which has been freckled by the pea gravel which our department of highways spreads on icy roads as a poor excuse for sand.
The doors bear scars from the times my car was left alone in the grocery store parking lot.
The back fender has a dent from the time DH parked behind me in a driveway and I put my vehicle into reverse without looking.
The front bumper has a big scrape from being backed into while Subaru was waiting for me in front of the beauty shop.
And there is a big dimple on the right rear door from the time I parked near a golf course. I still have that dang golf ball in my glove box.
An unfamiliar ding on the roof had me puzzled. Then I remembered. There was that time when I stopped at a railroad crossing. A train was slowly approaching. I could have made it over the tracks and been on my way, but I decided to just wait. A pickup truck pulled up behind. In my rear view mirror I could see the driver was troubled. “Too bad,” I thought. “I’m not taking chances on your account.”
The approaching train sounded its horn. Then I heard honking from the pickup behind me. “What does he think—I’m a complete dufus? I’m not pulling forward in front of an oncoming train!”
I heard the DING! DING! DING! from the signal. Then the long flashing crossing arm came down—right on the top of my car. I had no choice but to sit there with the pickup truck behind me, the train rushing by in front and the striped pole lying across my roof. When the train passed and the arm rose I pulled forward across the tracks and drove on—feeling like a complete dufus.
So there in the cool of the evening I finished the shine job on my little auto and rubbed an extra layer of wax in the rusty ding on the roof.