Thursday, June 08, 2006

Airstream

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We are the reincarnation of the 1969 Mustang GT. In five years the pleasant little brainchild of Lee Iacooca went from honor student to troublemaker. It sang in Ford's choir then matriculated to cutting doughnuts in the lawns of nice neighbors. It took to performance in loud, almost trashy ways, got sleek, went boxy, took the fuel efficient four cylinder path in the gas crunch of 1973 and after we all quit caring about fuel prices it went back to speed. After a half dozen major body changes we're back to the 1969 look even though it's a radically different car. Thus the advances of the new evoke the charm of the old or perhaps it's just another pitch to the Baby Boomer generation's insatiable nostalgia.

We feel smooth, like to think we're heart throb of the wind tunnel set and even had the spoiler deleted at the factory to keep it sleek. Several miles out of Aiken, SC, we caught sight of something which pulled us right off the road: an Airstream trailer. Like a dog which thinks it's related to a different breed, we prowled around the thing. What is sleeker than the Airstream !

When we saw the " For Sale " sign on both the Airstream and the truck which must have hauled it all over creation, it seemed sad. It was like a fellow who's forced to sell his boat and tosses in the rod and reels so they won't remind him of the boat. Truck and trailer were parked on an elevation at roadside about two hundred yards from the owner's house. It was a pleasant looking home with the front door open and a figure just within the doorway who appeared in silhouette. They sort of looked our way and we sort of looked their way, but no one advanced. The door to the Airstream was open so we peeked inside. We wondered what happy times had been had in its coziness, but we wondered more why it had to go. It doesn't cost anything to keep one around so it could, after all, just live out its life on this large tract of land. With the truck in the equation, however, it seems that one of the team must be out of the game. You just don't keep an Airstream for one. It's too much like rods and reels after the boat's gone.

The Airstream came into being around 1931 when ad man Wally Byam invented it to accommodate his wife who refused to go camping with him any other way. It was born of companionship. So, the Airstream has quite a lot of history and more devotees than any make of automobile. Mustang's forty odd years of zoom-zooming has been loads of fun, but Airstream has meant much more to many more for much longer.

If we just blew past everything on the sides of the roads we travel, we'd certainly miss out on many funny, interesting even bizarre discoveries. Sometimes when we pause in our travels, though, we get a window to the sadder side. Then we're ever so happy to get back on the road and try to escape the gravity of life's harder lessons.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Pam said...

Okay, I'm thinking about living in an Airstream while I build a house. I think it would be...an experience. My brother just bought one (a vintage 70's one) - and it's just gorgeous. I think it might be my home for awhile.

6:30 PM  
Blogger Windviel said...

Oh, Pam, we think that you'll love the Airstream and the individual aura which attends each one of them. It's a great way to oversee contraction of your new house from on site coziness.

There are itinerant enhancement engineers, undocumented artisans perhaps, who will buff your Airstream to a mirror finish not unlike the spit shine on a Citadel cadet's dress shoes. Of course, this may well broadcast nano particles of Al2O3 about those bull frogs which love to serenade the Airstream. Frankly, we think the frogs are fine with Zinc. We usually feed our micro marine organisms with finely divided copper ( Cu at the fish kill tomorrow ? ) which the frogs also like. We now suspect that they are eating your Zinc and our Copper then passing brass. The bad news is that you can't clean up after them with a magnet.

We don't know where you're building, but hope that it's not too far from Smitty's. Before the house is half complete, you'll be drinking straight Gin and ditching the quinine as malaria is probably more fun than building a house. If ever you're running dry, just give us a buzz. We're always interested in shaving a few femto seconds off of our elapsed time to Bamburg.

We think that friends should give you polypropylene Tupperware for your house warming since you never know if your maid's going to autoclave the goods.

Be brave and keep your Gin up. Thanks for your comment.

4:20 AM  

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