As I was getting ready for work today, out of habit I put my car keys in my pocket. At that moment I recalled when I carried my first set of car keys when I in High School, it was 1974. The first day I drove my dune-buggy to school after getting my driver’s license, all day long I thought of those keys which were my ticket to freedom after school. I had never carried keys before since we rarely locked our house. The only time I can remember locking our house is when we were leaving town for the weekend.
The afternoons after school, I would drive just to drive. I loved the freedom of the open road. Back then there was not much traffic; road rage was not a thing and most everyone seemed to look out after the others. My first two cars, a dune-buggy (which was a ’65 VW Bug without the body on a shortened frame) and a ’66 Chevelle SS were not known to be reliable cars. My remedy for that was to carry as many tools as I could. I heard later that my older brother Johnny would stay home on Friday nights to be near the phone when he knew I was going somewhere in the Chevelle so he could pull me home when I broke down. He did just that many times.
Many years later when I worked in the shipyards I had to take things to the tugboats which at times were many hours away. My boss, Bruce Stapp, would make sure I had all the tools I needed to get the truck back home. I guess my reputation was known by a few. I still carry tools with me everywhere I go, even though it has been a long time since I have broken down.This morning as I grabbed my keys and recalled the first time I carried keys was one of those moments I would like to have more often. Remembering were we are from and who was in our lives for most of us are such fond memories.