A Girl and Her Truck
By Cait Carpenter | Jan 20, 2016
I own the most beautiful truck in the world.
Alright, well, I suppose to some it may not be the most beautiful truck in the world, but to me, she’s priceless. This little truck is the first vehicle I’ve ever owned that was worth a nickel, and I’ll be darned if I let anyone ever tell me otherwise (and they surely have). Let me tell you why.
By the way, her name’s Donna.
For my whole life I dreamed of having a truck loud enough that everyone could hear her from miles away, and within three days of owning this gem, the exhaust fell off on my way to church, and now Donna hollers like a cat in a trap. My boss tells me that he can hear when I’m on my way, far from the farm. It even sounds intentional! I’ve gotten many compliments from deluded strangers about how nice my little truck rumbles, and I don’t tell them that our secret is simply a rusty exhaust system. Someday I’ll fix it. Someday is a long way off.
Now, she may not be new and shiny anymore, but she and I share a birthday (at least, that’s what I tell myself) in the great year of 1992. Donna is even a fancy, schmancy Regency Conversion truck with a retro, woodgrain interior and a bench seat straight out of a New Jersey living room. I sleep like a baby in this truck on those warm summer nights after I’ve been fishing and had a couple too many Woodchuck ciders. Just myself, the stars, and a silly, purple, step-side Chevy — sometimes even the dog, who fits comfortably in the passenger seat with her silly face hanging out the window.
Our best admirers are older gentlemen at the gas station. I’ve received many a compliment on Donna. Once recently a fella, fueling up a lovely mid-80’s Cutlass Supreme, told me how nice she sounded, and quizzed me about her V-8. After chatting a moment, he mentioned the patch of rust on the roof; that I should get my boyfriend to do some body work on her. I told that man that my boyfriend doesn’t touch my truck, only me! You should have seen the look on his face.
Donna hauls my feed and has yet to leave me stranded on the road, save for the one time her windshield wipers quit; a thing that happens from time to time but is quite inconvenient on the way to work in a rain shower. Thankfully after sitting for a minute at a roadside park, she remembered her wiring and we were back on the road to work. Haven’t quite figured this issue out yet, but it’s on our list. New passenger mirror, cab corners, etc … the list grows. I chip away as I have the money — and I do quite a bit of it myself. My dad helps me, obviously, but when I have the chance, it’s me under the hood.
Of course, when I first got her, the men in the family had some things to say about a rusty, lowered, purple truck. That she wasn’t worth the $1,000 that I paid for her, that she wasn’t reliable, that I didn’t need a truck, yackity-yack. But guess who has the only running truck in the driveway?
My poor city man, bless his heart, wonders why I need a truck. I tell you what, he best never utter those words, “It’s me or the truck,” and if he does, I dearly hope he enjoys the smell of exhaust fumes and burnt oil as I putter away over the horizon.
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