Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Laurel Crowned Princess, Chapter 7-'Pepaw and I'

It was my Grandpa, about the same age I am now, approaching forty, though it’s always been hard to guess the ages of the Hamby men. He looked like my grandpa, but just a younger version of him. I learned after my grandpa died that the Wildcat was marketed to appeal to people like my grandpa, an older accountant-type that preferred a nicer, bigger car for the family, but with a whole lot more power than the mere everyday run of the mill, already powerful land yacht.

As we drove towards the mirage he told me all kinds of stories of fun that you would have never guessed my grandpa had with that car, and another 1938 Straight ‘8’ Buick that he had before.

Certainly stories he never told in front of Memaw and the rest of the family.

Now, it was no secret that Pepaw was a quiet, type ‘A’ personality behind the wheel, and known stories of his daily driving habits were scary enough.

These were beyond that.

We had a great time. My grandfather was very introverted in the time I knew him, but here he was full of joy and wit, which he had always had, it was just harder to access it then. I could tell now that he was truly free and undoubtedly happy.

We had a good laugh about the day at my college’s daily chapel when they were supposed to announce my grandpa had passed. Instead, they announced that my father had died.

As we approached my grandparent’s house, I found it quite odd that the sand of the desert stopped right in front of the street adjacent to the driveway. You couldn’t see the old brick house that sat next door on Redwood, nor could you look across the street and see the old Texaco station on Concord that later had been converted to a house.

All there was, was my grandparent’s house, complete with the yard, my grandpa’s 73 Buick Century parked in front, my grandma’s 81 Chevy Malibu-these are the last cars my grandparents ever purchased.

When Pepaw stopped the car in the sand just before the driveway, I began to get out, but he told me, “Brian, I’ve come back to show you something very important. Its just Memaw in the house, and you’re going to see yourself there with her. She or ‘you’ won’t be able to see or hear us, but we will be able to observe everthing.

“Ok, great,” I replied and was eager to get out, but again my grandpa stopped me.

“Wait a minute.” And he looked in the rear view mirror.

Go To Chapter 8


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