John T 1972 Plymouth Duster 340 2dr Sport Coupe

Magic Carpet Ride

It's always memory lane for us. Everytime we talk of the past the Duster seems to always come up into the conversation.

My wife and I purchased this car new August 5th, 1972, almost 42 years ago. The picture is of when we took the car back to the dealership August 5th, 2011 39 years later to the day. We backed it up and parked it in the same spot we first saw it. Back then we were both 22 years old and my wife was 8 months pregnant with our first child. Today It easily puts a smile on our faces when we start the car and hear that 340 rumble. We feel like kids again and the memories, lots of those. When gas was .19 cents a gallon and you could cruise the gut (as we kids called it) all night long for under $3.00. Then when it got to .39 cents and then went on up to .59 cents which seemed like over night lots of people went into a panic mode. Many muscle cars could be purchased for just a few hundred dollars.

It seems like we were always out in the driveway washing and waxing the car, especially before a weekend cruise. There are scares on the underside of the trunk from taking it camping and loading up the trunk stuffed with fire wood. In the mid 70's we towed a 24 foot Terry travel trailer with it and we went everywhere. In 78 we took out an 18 month loan to purchase 2 dirt bikes using the Duster as collateral. We shake our heads in disbelief in the things we did back then and no way would do today. Today we just take it cruising during the summer months and sometimes we go to a car show. People are suprised when we say, "Yes, that is the original paint." It must be all that washing and waxing we did and still do today. Our first child, our daughter and grandson like to go with us to those car shows. It's memory lane for our daughter as well with the memories of her and her brother in the back seat. That memorable drive when she ask, "what's that loud noise dad?" Oh, that's just the 4 barrel kick'in in honey. And the trips we took with her and her brother falling asleep in the back seat listening to the purr of the engine. Our grandson puts a smile on our faces looking around at a car show and asks, "you mean these muscle cars were everywhere, even parked on the streets, when you were young grandpa?" Memories, oh yes, lots of them.

1 Reader Comment

  • 1
    Adam Rosenfeld NY February 15, 2014 at 07:25
    Wow! Great story. Perhaps the thing that gets me most is that the car has its original paint! Those quarters always rusted out like mad! I know, because that was my first car. That same year and color. In fact, I'm going to post my story here about how I acquired it (as 2nd owner) shortly. I know you are asked this ALL the time, but please, do put me on your list of people you'd like to take care of the car for you when you are ready to see it in a new home (so my kids can also enjoy it and I can relive my youth). Thanks

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