John C

Friends don't leave friends stranded!

I lived on a farm in rural Arizona, west of Phoenix, and in my junior year of high school (1970), I wanted an alternative to taking the bus the 8 miles to school plus I wanted a car for dating. My father had parked a non-working, 4-door '57 Ford on the farm. He told me I could have it if I wanted to get it running. I had worked on bicycles, farm equipment and cars/trucks throughout my youth so I thought, "what the heck", I'd give it a try. Well after doing all I could to resurrect it, I paid a mechanic, with equipment I did not have, $50 to do the fine tuning. We got it running and I drove the car everywhere the remaining two years before I went off to college. High school friends named it "Thunder", presumably after the movie "Thunder Road", and the car became known throughout the area.

While I was in my senior year of high school in 1971, a friend, a year ahead of me, was attending the Univ. of Arizona in Tucson, about 130 miles away. He had come home on his motorcycle for the weekend and at around 9:00 p.m. on a Sunday night, he called me to ask if I could load his broken down motorcycle on the back of "Thunder" and take him back to Tucson. "Thunder" had never been on a road trip before and I had school the next day, and not to mention, my farming chores before school on Monday morning to do!

I have no idea why but we had a motorcycle rack laying around the farm, so I attached it to my rear bumper and drove to my friends house to pick him, and the motorcycle up. We had a great trip remembering our high school escapades and him telling me about college life.

I arrived back home at around 4:00 a.m., tired but feeling good about the experience!

John Cole

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