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Old Trucks Make Good Commutes

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<strong>Hank’s International Harvester 1200 pickup.</strong>
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I&rsquo;ve always been a sucker for the lines of an old pickup truck. I don&rsquo;t know whether it&rsquo;s because I have been around them most of my life, or that I drove them, or that people who were important to me drove them. Now that I commute 20 miles to work each day in an old truck, I know that it isn&rsquo;t just the lines that I love, it&rsquo;s also the sound, feel, lack of intermittent windshield wipers, lack of air conditioning, and a bunch of other quirky things that encourage me to slow down and pay attention to the world around me, and think about things.
<p>This particular truck is a 1964&nbsp;<a title=”International Harvester” href=”http://scoutconnection.com/” target=”_top”>
<span style=”color: #000000;”>International Harvester</span>
</a>&nbsp;<a title=”1200 series” href=”http://www.jpscout.com/images/%2768_1200_Big.jpg” target=”_top”>
<span style=”color: #000000;”>1200 series</span>
</a>&nbsp;machine with a big steering wheel and a tiny cab. It came my way last Christmas; a gift from my wife and daughters. Wow. I love the truck because of what it is and because it reminds me every day of how lucky I am to have a family filled with women who care about me. I drove a crew-cab version (with the turning radius of a loaded container ship) of this&nbsp;<a title=”Binder” href=”http://www.binderbulletin.org/#IH_Pickups_and_Scouts” target=”_top”>
<span style=”color: #000000;”>Binder</span>
</a>&nbsp;for the county highway department summers during college. I like that it reminds me of the fun I had working with that cast of characters, and of whiling away warm summer lunch hours, in the shade, playing spades.</p>
<p>Plenty of folks complain that they dislike their daily commute; I don&rsquo;t blame them. I, on the other hand look forward to the transition time at both ends of the workday. I am lucky that my trip is an easy one and that it passes through some lovely and ever-changing countryside. The commute helps me mark the seasonal progression and process memories associated with it. It helps me wind up to meet the day&rsquo;s challenges and unwind when I have done all I can do. But, perhaps best of all, when wrapped in that noisy metallic cocoon of the old truck&rsquo;s cab, the commute lets my thoughts lead me where they will.</p>
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<a href=”http://www.grit.com/biographies/oscar-h-will” target=_self>Hank Will</a>
<em> raises hair sheep, heritage cattle and many varieties of open-pollinated corn with his wife, Karen, on their rural Osage County, Kansas farm. His home life is a perfect complement to his professional life as editor in chief at GRIT and Capper’s Farmer magazines. Connect with him on </em>
<a title=Google+ href=”https://plus.google.com/u/0/117459637128204205101/posts” target=_blank rel=author>Google+</a>.</p>

Published on Jun 26, 2008

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