In 1987 I spotted an ad for a 1946 Ford. The black and white picture looked good, and as fate would have it, I happened to be in south central Missouri on another matter and made arrangements to stop by to have a look at the old Ford. From the moment I pulled into the owner's driveway and saw this beautiful blue 2 door, I was in love. It was an original car with 44,000 miles. There were the normal signs of slight wear and minor scratches, but to me it was perfect. After a test drive and the mandatory haggling on price the deal was sealed.
The remainder of the year was happily spent at car shows and cruising. While not being polished or driven, the '46 took over a prized spot in the garage that had previously been claimed by my wife's car. Even though her car now sets outside in the weather, she was still happy for my joy in this old car. There was even a wreath hung on the grill that Christmas.
On Christmas day, when we unwrapped our Christmas presents, I found that my wife had given me the "gift of chrome". She had gone to a chrome plating shop in Kansas City and asked to purchase a gift certificate for refinishing the bumpers on my '46. The shop owner was surprised at this request because he had never done this before, but loved the idea and created the gift certificate for my Christmas present. The next spring, the bumpers came off and went to the shop, and that "modern blue" beauty sparkles even more.
Every time I clean and polish the '46, I think of that very special Christmas present.